What Is The Likelihood of Being Stung By A Boxie?
It would be easy to say that the chances are 'slim'! So while the chances of getting stings from a deadly Box Jellyfish in Thailand or anywhere for that matter are relatively rare, it is estimated that around 100-200 people are killed by Box Jellyfish in South-East Asia every year. It is also estimated that there are countless numbers of near-fatal, serious and damned painful stings using the well researched Australian model as a guide AND if you are stung the chances of being killed couldn't be higher.
The tropical sea is a wild place full of weird, wonderful and seriously dangerous animals that you are exposed to everytime you step foot into the water, though that doesn't mean you're going to see them all or be confronted by a dangerous beast.
In Thailand there are thousands and thousands and thousands of human lives tragically ended on the roads - buses, trucks, cars and particularly motorbikes are massive killers in Thailand. The same can't be said about deadly Box Jellyfish where it is conservatively estimated (as previously expressed) that a figure in the 10s or possibly more die annually.
However, this doesn't make it any less significant as 1 life is as precious as anything.
At least on the road in Thailand we can make an informed decision and choose to a degree how and when we travel to minimize the risk. I see inexperienced farang motorbike riders without helmets fanging through traffic and think 'statistic'.
Similarly, at numerous beaches across Thailand and Malaysia and the Philippines and throughout the Indo-Pacific I look at the sea and think 'box jellyfish'.
While the risk is minimal it is very real and while not a big problem in terms of volume the problem couldn't be bigger if you are stung by a Box Jellyfish. Wrong place, wrong time, the end.
Minimizing the risk even further is simple by wearing a lycra stinger suit when in the water and saving a life is greatly improved if vinegar is immediately splashed on the stings.