Darwin Awards
2020 Slush Pile

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Don't open manholes on busy streets

2020 Reader Submission
Pending Acceptance

A homeless man in his 20's, possibly living in a manhole in Panorama City, CA made the unfortunate choice on July 10, 2021 to lift the manhole cover in the middle of a busy street. He likely never even saw the Silverado truck before it ran over the manhole cover, knocking him back down the hole. Surveillance video shows the metal plate cover, still mostly over the manhole, bouncing over the hole with notable force, then flying into the street. Los Angeles Fire Department paramedics responded to treat the man but he was declared dead.

The driver of the Silverado likely did not see the manhole cover moving when they drove over it, and may have had no idea he or she hit someone, but regardless now has a bounty out for his or her arrest.

Submitted on 07/12/2021

Submitted by: Anonymous
Reference: https://www.nbclosangeles.com/news/local/man-under-street-killed-when-driver-strikes-manhole-cover/2

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>> Moderator Scores <<

Tracy said:
Definitely Toss: No Self-Selection
Thanks, but it sounds like an unfortunate accident to me

Bruce said:
Definitely Keep: Darwin Award
This is unique enough that I'm willing to accept it based on just that fact alone. Manhole covers are heavy (according to Google, around 250lbs/113kg) so are not easy to move. Trying to push one out of the way to climb out of a manhole in the middle of an active street is far from a good idea.

Candi said:
Definitely Toss: No Self-Selection
I agree with Tracy, this was an unusual accident.

James said:
Definitely Toss: Not Amusing
This one is an "almost", but it is, in the end, a tragic accident. Thanks just the same!

Darwin said:
Definitely Keep: Darwin Award
Well this is a bit sketchy, homeless guy lifting a manhole cover? But Bruce brought in new information about the weight of the cover. It was a real effort, rather than a casual push on a trap door. Was the fellow lost in the maze, reading his underground conduits map upside-down?