A BROWN snake bite has led to a near-death experience for the father of a NSW Riverina family.
Father's Day started out perfectly for Whitton resident Allan Dart, who was enjoying spending time with his family to celebrate the occasion.
A short walk to a nearby vacant lot in the small community started off innocent enough, but ended with a brown snake striking and biting Mr Dart.
Being the casual person he is, he walked back to his home with his son-in-law, reporting he hadn't felt a thing and was confident the bite happened so fast no venom had been injected.
His daughter Allanna insisted they bandage and stent the area, and call Triple Zero.
Miss Dart horrified to learn her first aid skills weren't up to par, realising it was something she should have had training in prior to the incident occurring.
Mr Dart was still showing no symptoms from the bite, instead telling his family he wanted to finish his celebratory beer.
However, Miss Dart was adamant in calling Triple Zero with paramedics arriving soon after. It turned out to be a life-saving call, with Mr Dart transported to Griffith Base Hospital for treatment.
"Even in Griffith dad was still saying he was fine ... it wasn't until 10pm that night he started to experience pain in his back," she said.
"(The following morning) I got a phone call at 6:45am from Griffith Base to say my father was being airlifted to St Vincent's (Hospital) in Sydney to go to ICU as the anti-venom wasn't having any affect on him.
"His kidneys were starting to not function and his oxygen was very low."
Identifying the type of snake means anti-venom treatment may not always work or be available.
In Sydney, Mr Dart continued to decline, suffering a heart attack, fluid on his lungs, stomach pain, blood clots and permanent damage to his kidneys, which means he will now require dialysis treatment several times a week for the rest of his life.
Miss Dart said the doctors in Sydney saved her father's life, but they too weren't experienced in dealing with snake bites of this kind.
Mr Dart spent two weeks in hospital before being transferred to Wagga Wagga, finally arriving back at his home in Whitton this week.
A long road awaits for him and his family with ongoing treatment required.
"I want everyone to be super mindful of the danger of these snakes ... first aid really does save a life," Miss Dart said.
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