There is a little fear in every single one of us, some more than others. And with that fear comes the everyday parts of life that make those fears a reality. Of course, not everything we are afraid of is real, but certain things, like coconuts falling from trees and people being struck by lightning are just two crazy happenings that end up killing a surprisingly large number of people each year. It would be easier to imagine life without these kinds of freakish deaths. However, that is the sad reality. Life isn’t perfect.
For example, say you are afraid of the ocean. Could it be that the dark depths of the waters terrify you because you have no idea what is lurking underneath? Perhaps you do know what’s under there and that is the reason why you are scared. Sharks swim through the oceans every day and night, and some people worry that when they are visiting the beach that they will be attacked. But the fact is, the odds of you being attacked by a shark are one in 11.5 million! Those odds are rather interesting, considering so many people have this fear. There are a lot of other possibilities, that may seem strange, but are actually much more likely to get you killed than a shark attack. Welcome to the world of the weird and bizarre.
If you’re at the beach and about to jump in the water, be sure to look out above. Especially if you are on a beach that has coconut trees. While you are worrying whether or not a shark is going to eat you, a coconut could be headed straight for you! It’s estimated that around 150 people are killed by falling coconuts each year. It doesn’t sound like much, but considering the event, that’s quite a large number. It certainly isn’t something that you would normally think about on a daily basis or anytime for that matter. Sure, coconuts seem harmless in our every day lives until you become the victim or know someone who was injured because of a falling coconut. And if it ever were to happen to a relative or friend, it would most certainly be considered a freak accident.
During the winter holidays, we think about a lot, from Christmas trees and Santa Claus, to who is going to be kissing who under the mistletoe. It’s a time for celebrating the people we are thankful for and really going all out to make them happy with presents and stockings. But what about the dangers of the holiday season? Sure, there are places around the world where the “colder” times of the year aren’t exactly cold, but what about Russia? In that famed country there are places that get so cold, large icicles form. Eventually, some of these icicles end up breaking off, falling to the ground, sometimes at incredible and deadly speeds. It’s estimated that in Russia alone, icicles kill around 100 people each year.
Jellyfish are very interesting creatures. They mesmerize us and bring out some very interesting questions. And if you’re still worried about being attacked by a shark in dark waters of the world, just remember that other things like jellyfish lurk in the water as well. And you have a much larger chance of being stung, bitten, or attacked by jellyfish. They are very well known for their sting, which is said to be powerfully painful. And all around the world, there are jellyfish of varying sizes and venom, depending on where you want to look. Each year, it’s estimated that about 200 people die due to jellyfish stings. It is said that some can even kill you in a few hours because of the toxic venom. Box jellyfish, specifically, are considered one of the most poisonous creatures in the world because of their potent venom. They’re known by many as the deadliest jellyfish in the world.
12. Hot Dogs
Imagine your favorite time of year. It’s summer and you are about to go to a family barbecue. The sun is high in the sky and everything seems completely fine until one of your family members chokes on a piece of hot dog. Eventually, someone helps them out and they are okay, but sometimes this isn’t the case. Around 13 people per year die in the United States because of choking on a hot dog. It doesn’t sound real, but unfortunately, it is an unsettling truth. The fact that anyone dies from a hot dog in any year is a baffling fact. The last thing you want to have to explain at an outdoor family gathering is how one of your nieces or cousins died because of a hot dog. Not exactly the best conversation starter by any means.
Women have the fabulous advantage of many dress styles, giving them the chance to look fashionable and be noticed by people everywhere they go. However, men do not have this luxury, so the theme most of the time is what type of tie will be worn when going out. It’s an important part to the suit if you’re the type of person that wears them on a daily basis, or if you just like suits in general. But many men probably do not know that a tie can be a deadly thing. It’s estimated that around 10 people per year have deaths that are linked to this clothing item, and no one would ever think it! Mainly because a tie is simply an everyday item for many men around the world. This is another situation that would often be considered a freak accident.
Here is one that many people have probably been thinking about while reading this article. With thunderstorms happening literally every day, one would think that the death rate is much higher than what it actually is. However, it’s estimated that there are only 40 to 60 deaths per year due to lightning strikes. Given the fact that the chance of being struck by lightning is 1 in 960,000, those are some pretty good odds against the powers of the sky. Now, whenever a friend asks you about the likelihood of a shark attack, you can be completely honest with them and tell them that they have a better chance of being struck by lightning than attacked by a shark (killed in a shark attack is 1 in 3,748,067). Definitely something to think about next time you’re in the water.
Watching the television is something that we all love to do. It’s a universal truth that practically no matter where you go, you will somehow find a television in the area, and this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. After all, it is the device which we use to watch Shark Week. However, you might want to be a little more afraid of that TV and a little less of the sharks. Studies show that in 2011 alone, TVs caused 29 deaths, mainly due to heavy sets toppling over onto toddlers. That’s quite a large total for something as simple as a television. It’s important to make sure anything heavy is anchored, especially if there are curious kids around.
8. Cell Phones
It’s a good thing that sharks live in the ocean and not on our highways and roads. Otherwise, we might have a little bit more to worry about than simply texting and driving. It’s a sad fact, however, that many people to this day still text and drive. It’s a dangerous act, and it’s one that usually costs 6,000 lives each year, in the United States alone. All over the world people are texting driving, not giving a care to their own safety or even the safety of others. There has been quite a reaction to these incidents, and thanks to social media and other major groups that have devoted themselves to stopping texting and driving, the number of deaths continues to decrease. Hopefully, within the next few years, we will be able to cut back on such a terrible way for someone to die.
Mowing can be such a daunting process. It takes quite a while to mow the entire yard. Have you ever wondered what excuse you could use to get out of doing it? How about the fact that you are more likely to be killed by a lawn mower related injury than attacked by a shark? Around 75 people a year die due to the injuries sustained from a lawnmower. That’s a ridiculous amount and one that shouldn’t be real at all. But as with all machines, comes the possibilities for accidents, and with lawnmowers, there certainly are many. The death toll doesn’t even count the standard accidents that didn’t result in death. So, if you have to mow, take your time, and be careful!
6. Champagne Corks
You’re standing at a New Year’s party and things have really taken a turn for the better. Suddenly, you hear someone from the kitchen shout that they’re going to be opening another bottle of champagne. You run into the kitchen, completely unaware that you are running straight towards the bottle. The cork is popped right as you walk in and all of sudden you are knocked out cold. Not many people can really say that this has ever happened to them, because it should be common sense to always point the bottle away from everyone when opening a bottle. However, about 24 people are killed every year. And that counts for deaths from all around the world. An unfortunate number to say the least. Obviously, no one wants to be killed by a cork from a champagne bottle. Unfortunately, some people do not follow common sense very well, and the result is devastating.
People are always deciding that it’s just a little bit easier (and cheaper) to move their own furniture. They want to take into consideration what needs to be handled with care and what should be tossed to the back like a rag doll. While this is all fine, the act of moving your own furniture comes with its own hazards and concerns that many people often do not think about. Take for instance, moving a couch down a flight of stairs. If both people aren’t careful, it could lead to one of them falling, or both. While most of the time people just walk away with minor injuries, some aren’t as lucky. About 26 people every year are crushed by furniture while moving to another location. That number doesn’t sound very high, but any type of death is tragic. Maybe hiring movers doesn’t sound like such a bad idea from now on.
You know what to say to those who are super clumsy: always hold the railing on the stairs. Yet, it isn’t really a rule that many of us keep in mind, but it is definitely something to think about. Considering the fact that around 1,600 people die in the United States each year because of accidents related to stairs, you would think it would be time to invest in safer stairs. Unfortunately, the fault isn’t always due to unsafe conditions, but poor decisions from people who should have been simply walking rather than running, sliding, or even skating down some stairs. There is also the elderly to consider as well, and also those who attempt to take on stairs when they are completely drunk. Whatever the case, it’s safe to say that when tackling the stairs, it’s best to use the hand rails and avoid crazy behavior if that is at all possible.
Do you remember when you were little and your Mom and Dad would throw you a really big birthday party, filled with all your friends and presents, even that birthday cake that you had been wanting all year? Maybe Mom decided to throw in a creepy clown, which was never okay. A lot of people worry about clowns in today’s world, but no one really thinks about the dangers of balloons. Because believe it or not, it doesn’t happen very often, but you can bet balloons are higher up on the chart for threatening your life than sharks are. In 2013, it’s said that at least 6 children died, their deaths being linked to balloons. Death by balloon may sound like a funny joke among friends because no one ever believes that something like that could ever happen, but in fact, it has. They were terrible ordeals, especially for the parents.
2. Swing Sets
Almost everyone remembers their first swing set. It’s something that is hard to forget, due to the fact that it brought so much joy and happiness into our lives when we were kids. Then, we grow older, we have children of our own, and it’s time to watch our children play on the swingsets we get for them. Although it might ruin your childhood just a bit, accidents do occur on swingsets, and unfortunately, even death. It’s a rare occasion, with about 20 deaths per year. People simply don’t think about these things when they see their children having fun out on the playground, or even in their own backyard. It’s a terrible thing to have to go through for any parent, but unfortunately, it has happened in the past and will probably happen again in the future. It’s the simple physics of swinging momentum, and high speed collisions and ejections are bound to happen.
1. Black Friday Shoppers
If you’re a sensible person, you probably run at the mention of Black Friday. It’s the day after Thanksgiving when people go rabid for discounted items, and it happens every year. But why has this happened to America? It is a sad fact that you’re more likely to be trampled to death at a Black Friday sale, than to be killed by a shark in the ocean. So, next time you are out and about on Black Friday, shopping for that thing you just can’t live without, maybe it will pay off to be remember that in that instant, you are probably safer in the water with the sharks, than you are in the middle of a crowded mall, waiting for the “best sales” to be unleashed. Maybe you are better off spending your shopping money on a plane ticket to sunny, southern California. Just something to think about.