A snake dubbed one of the world's most dangerous reptiles was discovered in a shipping container of rocks from India.

South Essex Wildlife Hospital vets locked the animal in a room and sealed the door "before someone was likely killed."

The saw scaled viper was found in a box of rocks from India and vets say the reptile kills more people in its native country that any other species.

A spokesman for South Essex Wildlife Hospital said: "In addition to many British wildlife species coming in today we also had a call about a critter that is definitely not in the country it should have been. We had a call regarding a stowaway snake that had arrived in a shipping container from India.

Braintree and Witham Times:

"As it was identified as a saw scaled viper and having had one before we understood fully the gravity of just how dangerous these reptiles are, they are way up there in the top few most deadly snakes, it is believed to have killed more people than all the other species combined.


"The authorities that had already been contacted were not responding to the situation so our reptile expert Steve and Tom the vet collected the very agitated and aggressive animal before someone was likely killed.

"It is now in a locked box in a sealed room,  Tom taped up the door, with warning signs, awaiting collection from an appropriate facility that sue our manager has contacted."

The charity bosses are glad not to have to deal with venomous creatures too often but said they feel sad they can't give it is freedom and get it back home