Charles Darwin at a green chalkboard.

1994 Darwin Awards

Honoring Charles Darwin, the father of evolution, Darwin Awards commemorate those who improve our gene pool--by removing themselves from it in the most spectacular way possible.

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1994 Darwin Award Winner
Unconfirmed by Darwin

If only he'd asked...

(7 September 1990, Sydney, Australia) Men seem to have an affinity for large trucks. What else can explain the actions of a 34-year-old thief who decided to take possession of the engine of an old Bedford tip-truck?

The truck was parked outside a glass recycling company in Alexandria. It generally takes three men to lift an engine block of this size, but our enterprising pilferer decided that the best way to remove the engine was from below, rather than the conventional out-the-top-with-a-crane technique.

He crawled under the cab and began to loosen the bolts.

Readers comment that an engine block can't drop, without removing the whole drive train and cutting out the motor mounts and bracing. Possibly it was the transmission or gearbox that fell on him, not the engine.

Suddenly the engine block broke loose and landed on his face, killing him instantly. Police ascertained that he had at least one accomplice, judging by the pool of vomit found under a nearby bush.

An employee discovered his body early the next morning. The manager said that the truck was about to be scrapped. "If he had come and asked me for it, I would have given it to him."

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Submitted by: Rebecca Lupton
Reference: Australian Police Journal, Vol. 53, No. 2 June 1999

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