Well, at least were not this stupid:

(26 February 2008, France) A 71-year-old pensioner met a shocking end when his frugal attempt to illuminate his yard with power siphoned from the National Grid backfired spectacularly.

The gentleman in question illegally opened a major power junction box at the front of his house, intending to hard-wire a cable to his garden shed. Unfortunately, the poor chap attempted to do this rewiring during a major downpour.

The fatal result was all too predictable. He was immediately deep fried and declared deceased at the scene.

1--Don't hardwire your shed to a local power substation
2--Don't hardwire your shed to a power line... in the rain!
3--There _is_ such a thing as being too frugal.


All personnel stationed on an aircraft carrier are given safety lectures and demonstrations. In 1990, a First Class Petty Officer assigned to the mess deck was briefing new junior personnel on electrical safety. He showed them how to fill out a warning tag on circuits undergoing maintenance, and informed them that they were forbidden to work on the circuit until a second person had double-checked the tag and circuit. In a prime demonstration of why the rules were in place, he proceeded to open and grab a circuit that he supposed was de-energized, killing himself in front of 20 thunderstruck students.


14 April 2008, Texas) A contract worker was hired to install reinforcement bars on a communications tower near Camp Bullis. He was wielding power tools high above the ground, when two other workers saw him lean back and fall 225 feet to his death. Turns out, the man had loosened the bolts on the bar to which he was attached.

Police are calling it a tragic accident.


(2003, California) John, a Los Angeles real estate attorney, was skimming leaves from his pool when he noticed a palm frond caught in the power lines. His education had equipped him with sufficient acumen to become a successful litigator. Yet he was not shrewd enough to avoid becoming a toasty critter, when he reached up with the long metal pole and poked at the palm frond. Did I mention the power lines?

John was, for once, the path of least resistance.

Perhaps as an homage to his litigation skills, his family sued both the utility company and the pool supply store, for failure to disclose the danger of poking a metal rod into the power lines.

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