“Watch Out For Stingrays In Sentosa!” Man Cautions Beachgoers After Getting Stung On The Foot

Ally Villar
·4-min read

With summer near, many of us are probably excited to finally get some sun and clear water down at the beaches of Sentosa. But a recent beachgoer threw caution to the public after getting stung on the foot by a stingray.

On Saturday (3 April), the man uploaded a post on Facebook about getting stung by a stingray on his foot. This, quickly gained attention from netizens–many of whom were parents–with over 1.5k likes and shares.

Man Accidentally Gets A Stingray Sting On His Foot

stingray sting on foot
stingray sting on foot

Image source: Facebook / Benjamin Koellmann

The incident happened last Sunday (March 28) when Benjamin Koellmann was having a regular day playing in the water at Tanjong Beach in Sentosa with his family. As they were already about to leave the water, he accidentally stepped on a stingray and got stung on his foot.

He said the lifeguards were quick to help him and seemed to know what they were doing as they tended to his wound.

Koellmann was then immediately taken to Singapore General Hospital (SGH) by ambulance and wrote how “the care there was also good, even though they couldn’t really find a way to bring the pain down, especially at night.”

He shared his post in the Nature Society (Singapore) Facebook group to let people know what he went through and so they could “be more careful and hopefully avoid a similar ordeal.”

The Sting Caused Him To Be Hospitalised For Four Days

stingray sting on foot
stingray sting on foot

Image source: Facebook / Benjamin Koellmann

Koellmann says the following three nights he spent in the hospital were “some of the most intense nerve pain” he’s ever felt in his life.

He describes the pain as not only in the area of the sting but that it was also “shooting up” his leg then down his foot. He also adds that this was despite the constant doses of heavy painkillers.

“The pain eventually got better and I was released on day 4. Today the pain is pretty much gone, and I can only see a small scar from the sting. I’m just grateful that it got me and not my son who was about 5 feet away from me in the water,” he writes.

Throwing Caution To Other Beachgoers

Image source: Facebook / Benjamin Koellmann

Despite the immense pain he went through after getting a stingray sting on foot, Koellmann admits that he may have disturbed it in its home. He adds, “I’m sure it was properly scared and hence the defensive reaction was perfectly normal.”

But having still experienced the difficult situation and the possibility of his son getting hurt as well, Koellmann also reminded the public to stay safe while at the beach. This is especially since he was told that accidents like these do happen sometimes in Sentosa. As the hospital told him, “they had another case with the exact same injury on the same afternoon” but at Seloso Beach.

To prevent a sting or disturbing the many marine creatures on the beach, Koellmann suggests one way of protecting oneself is “to shuffle your feet through the sand instead of taking proper steps.” This is especially important to learn since stingers are capable of penetrating beach shoes.

Netizens also left comments below his post giving suggestion and tips on how one can stay safe from stingrays:

  • “Mostly they would swim away and mind their own business if they are not threatened,” Facebook user May Chua writes.

  • “Shuffling one’s feet is a good precaution against ocean bottom dwellers like rays, stonefish and scorpionfish if one has to wade or walk in shallow waters. Avoid touching rocks or corals for that reason as some of these are very well camouflaged,” writes user Alex Kang.
    The Facebook user adds, “Also if you’re swimming or snorkel[l]ing, best to cover up exposed skin by wearing long sleeve t-shirts, rashguards or tights to protect against marine stingers.”

  • “Everyone must learn from your kindness of keeping no hard feelings towards the ray and understanding that you in their home and the ray’s reaction was just its defence mechanism,” writes user Indarani Bahai Suppiah.

Lead image source from Facebook / Benjamin Koellmann.

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