Hey Boom, have you got a link for a detailed account?
The reason i'm asking is that hikers and climbers can take precautions, and still get killed. When i was living in Southern Illinois, a hiker was killed in an accident which would not have normally killed anyone. He and his buddies were walking along the top of a bluff, when he slipped on some loose stone, and went over the side. They were roped together, each of them carrying a loop of about 30 or 40 feet of rope. By the time his buddies got a good grip on the rope, and solid footing, he was dangling from the top of the bluff, and has some scrapes, but was otherwise uninjured. They swung him sideways to a scree slope, and as he was scrambling up, he was bitten by a rattlesnake.
In that part of the country, those are timber rattlers, not the puny little sidewinders or diamond-backs like the ones in the Southwest, whose bites you would probably survive. He was dead ten minutes after they hauled him up to the top of the bluff. So, they were not acting irresponsibly--that was a circumstance in which he could not have survived unless someone had been right there with the appropriate antivenin. One could argue that they should have had it, but snake bite is fairly rare there. He must have startled the snake. I was climbing a scree slope myself once, and was just about to put my hand on a stone near a crack in the bluff wall, when a timber rattler slid out of the crack, and down the slope past me. Apparently, he/she didn't feel threatened enough to bite.
Although this one is extraordinarily large, timber rattlers five feet in length or longer are not uncommon.