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It's 2020, So Monkeys Attacked A Lab Worker And Stole Coronavirus Blood Samples

Okay, who had "monkeys escape with the virus" on their 2020 bingo card, because things are getting ridiculous.

According to Reuters, a gang of monkeys attacked a lab employee in India and ran off with three blood samples taken for COVID-19 testing.


This year has seriously run out of chill.

Thankfully, while some of the social media rumors have spread this story as one of lab animals escaping a la Planet of the Apes, the truth is slightly less terrifying.

The incident didn't happen at a lab, but rather at a government hospital in the Meerut district of northern India.

Unsplash | Kameron Kincade

A lab assistant was transporting vials of blood drawn from patients who had tested positive for COVID-19 when wild monkeys accosted them, stealing the sample box containing three vials of blood.

After climbing up into nearby trees, the monkeys chewed at the packets before tossing the samples back to the ground.

Experts told Forbes that the monkeys were likely foraging for food and the sample packets looked similar to the treats Indian people often provide for them.

Monkeys are often given food by humans and have been known to aggressively steal treats.

Though the samples came from COVID-19 positive patients, no one came in physical contact with the samples.

After they were discarded by the monkeys, the mess was cleaned up and the area sanitized thoroughly. The patients provided new samples for testing.

However, some questions have been raised about how the samples were being transported, since attacking monkeys shouldn't have been able to get near biohazard materials in the first place.

h/t: CNN, Reuters

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