The Darwin Awards

2014 Darwin Awards

Next Prev Random Honoring Charles Darwin, the father of evolution, Darwin Awards commemorate those who improve our gene pool--by removing themselves from it.

Pool Party
2014 Darwin Award Winner
Confirmed True by Darwin

(17 July 2014, Poland) In the small town of Karczówka (160 residents) tragedy struck as seven people accidentally drowned in a cesspool, one after another. The first death was that of a driver whose job was to empty the septic tank into a slurry tank attached to a tractor; he succumbed to highly toxic hydrogen sulfide fumes and lost consciousness, falling into the pool. Following him were six people, each going to the rescue of those who had gone before, and each in turn falling unconscious into the muck and drowning. Fully 5% of the population of Karczówka was lost in this serial misadventure. An eighth person found in the muck did survive, thanks to the assistance of emergency workers.

The incident occurred on a hog farm and probably involved large amounts sewage from the pigs, although details are not clear in news reports.

Gather ye rosebuds while you may,
Old Time is still a-flying,
And this same flower that smiles today,
Tomorrow will be dying.
-Robert Herrick

Reader Comments: "You think you'd learn after the first 2..3...4....5....." "Apparently there was a queue of 157 more people lined up ready to help, it was only the fact that the cesspool had no more space that this tragedy finally came to an end." " They couldn't swim, but they went through the motions." "Rest in Pee" "Slurry tank accidents are very dangerous and the worst thing is you don't even know until you're dead." "Sounds like Lemmings." "Don't take life seriously, it's not like you will get out alive!" "C'est la merde." "Muck to Do about Nothing"

DARWIN NOTES: Four of the deceased were related to one another. Some people who commented on this Award consider it a tragedy. They say that rescuing family members is heroism, and laud the human instinct to disregard risk. They say, "Not! Funny!" Several expressed the viewpoint that those who died possess the very genes they would like to see passed on to future generations.

Rebuttal viewpoints expressed are that the sewage trailer driver was foolish to succumb to the "rotten egg gas." And whereas the first would-be rescuer was perhaps acting heroically, after that it became increasingly foolish to walk to one's death behind the guy in front who just walked to his death. The final word was this: "The genes I want to see passed on belong to the person who came upon the scene and had the good sense to say, hmm, looks like something dangerous is happening here..."

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