google10fa0980c6101c7f.html The Many Faces of Death: DEATH By Lava Lamp, USA

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Saturday, October 8, 2011

0 DEATH By Lava Lamp, USA

A man who placed a lava lamp on a hot stovetop was killed when it exploded and sent a shard of glass into his heart.

Philip Quinn, 24, of Kent, Washington, was found dead in his trailer home on a Sunday night by his parents.

A lava lamp features blobs of wax in liquid that rise and fall in a container when heated by a bulb at the base of the lamp.

The hippy-era psychedelic light exploded while Quinn was experimenting with it on his stove, closely observing it from only a few feet away when a flying shard of glass struck him in the heart and killed him.

“Why on earth he was heating a lava lamp on the stove, we don’t know,” Kent Police spokesman Paul Petersen said.

The heat from the stove built up pressure in the lamp until it exploded, spraying shards of glass with enough force to pierce his chest, with one shard piercing his heart and causing fatal injuries.  After the lamp exploded, Quinn apparently stumbled into his bedroom, where he died that afternoon, authorities said.

Police found no evidence of drug or alcohol use.

The circumstances of his death were later repeated and confirmed in a 2006 episode of the popular science television series MythBusters. The show also proved that even if shards of glass are not thrown with lethal velocity during such an attempt, the resulting spray of hot liquid from the lamp could easily cause severe burns to anyone nearby. The show also noted that the safety instructions clearly state that lava lamps should not be heated by any source other than the specifically rated bulbs and purpose-designed bases that are provided.  Homebrew lava lamp recipes can be found over internet, however some of them rely on combinations of highly flammable components like alcohol. Such lamps could represent a serious fire hazard in the case of rupture when heated over a light bulb.




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