The Darwin Awards

1999 At-Risk Survivor

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At-Risk Survivors have misadventures that stop short of the ultimate sacrifice. Nevertheless we salute the spirit of their colossal blunders with an Honorable Mention. Better luck next time!

Smokers Ignite!
1999 At-Risk Survivor
Unconfirmed by Darwin

(June 1999, Thailand) In Thailand, a crowd of onlookers was severely burnt at the National Anti Smokers Day. A hydrogen-filled cigarette ignited explosively when an irate young man tried to cut off the no-smoking symbol with a knife.

Reader Matt says, "This story did occur, but not in the way listed. What actually happened was that the giant cigarette was being held up so the anti-smoking club's president could cut it in half with a large sword. I suppose they proved smoking is bad for you, though."

Submitted by Hans-Peter Schernhammer
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