Freakish Fatalities

Urban legends about about bizarre deaths.

Daily life is hazardous, sometimes unbelievably so. No matter how imaginative our precautions or how steadfast our vigilance, the unthinkable can — and does — happen.

Sometimes even doing all the right things is nowhere near enough. These legends speak to that fear, that all our good planning and carefulness may not, ultimately, be enough. Bizarre, freakish, and deadly accidents can happen to anyone, including us.

Red bullet Charred remains of scuba diver are found in tree after forest fire.

Red bullet Hospital janitor accidentally kills patients by unplugging their life-support systems.

Red bullet Young boy dies from eating Pop Rocks candy with soda pop.

Green bullet Teenager accidentally hangs himself during Halloween stunt.

Red bullet A Virginia man is washing machined to death.

Green bullet Two men each lose an arm in a grisly tug-of-war contest.*

White bullet A suicide attempt involving hanging, shooting, poisoning, and immolation goes wrong.

White bullet A motorcyclist's coat worn backwards leads to his demise.

White bullet The 1867 wedding of a princess and a duke was marred by tragedy on an unprecedented scale.*

Red bullet In the wake of a major earthquake, a car thief found crushed in the vehicle he'd stolen.

Green bullet In 1919, a killing wave of molasses swept through Boston.

Green bullet A damaged cactus falls onto the man who had harmed it and kills him.

White bullet Calamity after calamity piles up in a tale of saving the worst news for last.

Red bullet Thailand is experiencing a rash of deaths and injuries from a "pumping" craze.

Red bullet Ronald Opus was shot while attempting 1994's most bizarre suicide.

Green bullet A prisoner used playing cards to take his own life.

White bullet Kid on a school bus is beheaded by a road sign.

Green bullet Lawyer demonstrating the safety of windows in a skyscraper plunges to his death.

White bullet Motorcyclist is decapitated by sheet of metal which falls from passing truck.

Red bullet A child died from drinking the contents of a prize-bearing Coca-Cola 'MagiCan.'*

Red bullet Houdini died from appendicitis brought about by his being punched in the stomach.

White bullet Woman fails to gas herself to death because the gas company has turned off service.

Green bullet Man is burned to death attempting to rescue dog from boiling hot spring.

Red bullet Man eating a lollipop chokes to death when his car's airbag forces the candy down his throat.

Red bullet Groom is suffocated by a stripper's massive breasts.

White bullet Burglar drops dead of a heart attack when startled by a fake hanging at his victims' home.

Red bullet Bodies of workmen are entombed in Hoover Dam.

Green bullet Several actors have kicked the bucket in front of an audience.

White bullet The arrival of a telegram announcing a death leads to the demise of the rest of the family.

Green bullet Nine people died in a beer flood in 1814.

White bullet Youths shoot a patrol car parked as a "speeder deterrent" on the one day it contains a real cop.*

White bullet Girl dies pleasuring herself with a broom.*

Red bullet Black Like Me author died of skin cancer caused by the treatment he underwent to darken his skin.

Red bullet Teen dies in car crash with a plastic jesus dashboard ornament embedded in her chest.*

Green bullet Tourist in Las Vegas is electrocuted while crossing the street.

Green bullet A Houston doctor was decapitated by an elevator.

Green bullet People have died laughing.

Green bullet An eruption of carbon dioxide from a lake killed hundreds of people.

Red bullet A band musician received a fatal head injury from a trombone slide.

White bullet Swearing off the game for good, a golfer launches the bag containing his clubs into a water hazard . . . momentarily forgetting his car keys were in the bag.

Multi-colored bullet Internet-circulated list titled "2003 Darwin Awards" details actual deaths.

Multi-colored bullet Internet-circulated list titled "2004 Darwin Awards" details actual deaths.

Multi-colored bullet Internet-circulated list titled "2005 Darwin Awards" details actual deaths.

Multi-colored bullet Internet-circulated list titled "2006 Darwin Awards" details actual deaths.

Red bullet Kid dies doing the latest dance step in a video.

Red bullet A circus dwarf died when he bounced off a trampoline into the mouth of a hippopotamus.

Red bullet A mixture of Mentos and Coca-Cola killed two Brazilian children.

Green bullet Man killed by fire hydrant.

Green bullet A spectator at a football game was killed by a flying model lawnmower.

Green bullet A man was killed by an exploding lava lamp.

Green bullet Golfer frustrated by the bad shot he made is killed by the club he threw away.*

Red bullet A man was convicted of manslaughter for accidentally killing his wife with a "Dutch oven."

Red bullet A teenager died attempting the ALS 'ice bucket challenge.'

Green bullet A young woman named Elisa Lam died under mysterious circumstances in Los Angeles.

David Mikkelson founded in 1994, and under his guidance the company has pioneered a number of revolutionary technologies, including the iPhone, the light bulb, beer pong, and a vaccine for a disease that has not yet been discovered. He is currently seeking political asylum in the Duchy of Grand Fenwick.