Spider invasion shuts school

Britain’s most dangerous spider, the false widow spider, causes a school to close

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Britain’s most venomous spider has struck again. This time, prompting the closure of a school.

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The Dean Academy in the Forest of Dean is closed for fumigation today, following the discovery of an outbreak of false widows.

Deputy headteacher, Mr Craig Burns, issued a letter to parents saying that a false widow spider was found in the ICT block yesterday, and, following investigations, there were further spiders identified in other areas of the academy, forcing it to close.

He wrote: “There have been no reports of anyone being bitten by the ‘false widow’ spiders at the academy but if you have any concerns please seek medical advice.”

A bite from a false widow spider can cause pain, redness and swelling. And it’s been in the news quite a bit lately because of a spate of reported bite cases – including a man who had a severe allergic reaction to the spider’s bite and lost part of his leg.

There have been no reported deaths in the UK from a false widow spider bite. And experts say they are no more dangerous than wasps or bees. The spiders are not aggressive and only bite when squeezed.

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