Child Stung by Deadly Box Jellyfish in Sentosa, Advisory Issued to Public to Take Caution
This has been the 5th box jellyfish sighting thus far in various locations.
A female child has been badly stung by a venomous box jellyfish found in Sentosa waters on Friday (17 July), where she developed blisters and red marks on her leg.
To warn other parents of this deadly creature, the child’s mother, Carolyn David shared about the unfortunate incident to the Marine Stewards Facebook page, an environmental conservation organisation.
Girl Stung by Deadly Box Jellyfish
According to Ms David, her 4-year-old daughter was paddling in shallow water near Mediterranean restaurant FOC Sentosa (located off the coast of Palawan Beach, Sentosa), when she encountered the box jellyfish and got badly stung on the leg.
The species of the jellyfish has not been identified, however, according to Marine Stewards.
In her post, Ms David also shared a video detailing the extent of her daughter’s injuries, which included nasty-looking blisters and several red markings that circled her leg.
In comments to users, she recounted rushing her daughter home as they lived relatively near on Sentosa.
Within 10 minutes, vinegar was poured on her leg. Antihistamine and medicated cream were also applied to relieve the pain and itch. Thereafter, the 4-year-old was taken to the hospital to seek proper treatment.
“She’s dealt with it very well thank you. We just need to make sure those blisters don’t get infected.”
Following her daughter’s ordeal, Ms David warned: “Please take precautions on the weekend with your children around Sentosa waters.”
She also attached an image of the venomous box jellyfish, that appears translucent yet still visible in the shallow waters.
Here is a clearer view of the box jellyfish, in which Singapore authorities have previously urged the public to steer clear from the area.
The box jellyfish is said to grow up to 10 feet long (3 metres) and 10 inches across.
5th Box Jellyfish Sighting Thus Far, Advisory Issued to Warn Visitors
Following this incident, Marine Stewards said that they have promptly contacted NParks and issued a public advisory.
The case involving the 4-year-old child is the 5th box jellyfish encounter thus far, with 21 March being the first sighting:
- Off of National Sailing Centre at East Coast Park (21 March)
- One Degree 15 Marina at Sentosa (3 July)
- Tuas (14 July)
- Seringat/ Lazarus island dock (16 July)
- Palawan beach at Sentosa (17 July)
The incidents have not been fatal but victims reportedly sustained severe injuries.
The public is advised against swimming at these areas for a further two weeks, as part of the updated advisory:
- St Johns islands
Ms David also updated in a comment that the Sentosa Development Corporation will be putting up warning signs along the beaches and have the NUS research team sent over to examine the Sentosa waters.
Dangers of Box Jellyfish
Box jellyfishes are known to be the most toxic animal on earth, containing toxins that attack the heart, nervous system, and skin cells.
According to National Geographic, venom from this creature could lead to human victims experiencing severe outcomes:
- Inflicting extreme pain that causes shock and eventual drowning
- Death from heart failure—even before reaching the shore
- Pain for weeks and significant scarring (for survivors)
In the event where visitors do come across further box jellyfishes, they are advised to help take some photographs or videos to help authorities speed up the search of these deadly creatures.
In the event of a box jellyfish sting, take caution not to rub the affected area nor use fingers to remove the tentacles, the advisory stated.
The public is also advised to stay vigilant and to not touch the jellyfish, alive or dead.