As with any outdoor activity – SAFETY IS KEY!

The WPFFA wants all our anglers to make sure that they know what to do in the event of an accident.

The main rules for anglers:

STAY WITH YOUR BUDDY – Always go with a buddy when you fly fish and seek help together should there be an accident.

Before leaving find out where the nearest medical facility is and note the telephone number.


Types of snakes

Cape Cobra

Cape Cobra



Puff Adder

Puff Adder

Effect of poisons

  1. ONLY in suspected neurotoxic bites (mamba, Cape cobra), is it recommended that you apply a wide crepe bandage firmly above the bite site (as tightly as for a sprained ankle) to slow the spread of venom to vital organs like the heart and lungs.
  2. The life threatening neurotoxic effects of Mamba and Cape Cobra bites (such as difficulty in breathing) develop within 30 min to 4 hours. If you are more than 2 hrs away from medical assistance, respiratory support (e.g. mouth-to-mouth resuscitation) may be necessary.
  3. The life threatening effects of a cytotoxic snake bite (e.g. puff adder) develop late (6-24 hours).

Preferred treatment

  1. In the case of a snake bite, get the patient to a medical facility as soon as possible. Phone ahead to notify them of the arrival of a snake bite victim – but stay calm. Snakebites are very seldom fatal and you have time to get to a hospital.
  2. Immobilise the patient if possible. If alone, keep calm and do not walk too fast or run as this speeds up the distribution of the venom.
  3. DO NOT suck the bite site.
  4. DO NOT apply a tourniquet.
  5. Comforting and reassuring the patient is a very important part of the first aid treatment.
  6. Try to get a good description of the snake.

NOTE: Anti-venom should only be administered by the trained medical staff in a medical facility.


Mountain Club of South Africa

Cape Town base: Tel: 021 937 0300 (WSAR)

Contact: David Nel 082 499 9656 ( / Ant Hall (

Somerset West base: Tel: 021 937 0300 (WSAR)

Contact: Gela Tölken 082 393 0407


For mountain security / crime related incidents in the W-Cape parks / Table mountain: 086 110 6417