The Darwin Awards

2001 At-Risk Survivor

Next Prev Random 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!

Life's a Gas
2001 At-Risk Survivor Confirmed True by Darwin

(28 January 2001, Japan) A man attempting to commit suicide brought a tank of propane into his apartment, opened its stopcock, and waited to die. Instead he merely lost consciousness. Four hours later he revived and, forgetting the suicide attempt, lit a cigarette. The explosion blew out an apartment wall, and burned the face of the suicidal smoker.

Note from Darwin: The man may have thought the tank contained carbon monoxide (CO) despite the label. Even if it contained CO, however, the suicide attempt would fail unless he had shut himself into a small space with the tank. Apartments are ventilated and the carbon monoxide would dissipate fairly rapildy. Outside air exchange also explains why the explosion was not more severe.

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Submitted by: DJW
Reference: Mainichi Daily News

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