"When you see it, you really start to panic. Holy crap, what is it going to do?" said Piatek.
What Piatek did manage to do was take a few photos, before calling up professional snake wrangler Tom Minga. He arrived and used snake tongs to remove it from the engine.
"It was shady, just in there just hanging out," said Minga.
Minga says it was a Southern Pacific, the most common local rattlesnake and about 4-feet long. It's hardly the first oversized rattler of the season. Minga just caught another one a few homes down.
A few days ago, 10News reported on the discovery of a 6-foot-long Red Diamond rattler that surprised a woman and her little dog in a Santee backyard.
Minga says the giant sizes mean despite the lack of rain this winter, food remains aplenty and the snakes should continue to be an active snake season. He added that he will relocate the rattlesnake somewhere in the backcountry.