Washington man electrocuted by urinating on power line

Rob in Arlington

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#1
By The Associated Press
March 01, 2010, 2:28PM
An Elma, Wash., man was killed by accidentally urinating on a downed power line after a one-car crash near Montesano.

Grays Harbor County sheriff's Deputy Dave Pimentel said Monday that Roy Messenger, 50, was not seriously hurt after he collided with a power pole Friday night. Messenger called a relative to pull his car out of the ditch.

When family members arrived they found Messenger electrocuted. Pimentel said  Messenger apparently urinated into a roadside ditch but didn't see the live wire.

Pimentel said there will be an autopsy but burn marks indicated the way the electricity traveled through Messenger's body.
 
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Anonymous

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#5
Bill Lehecka said:
Didn't Mythbusters do an episode on this, and it turned out to be a myth? Or am I wrong?
Electric fence was busted.  I think a live power line would be a whole different experiment.  I'm no expert, but I do work in the industry and I think the power from a line could make the jump.
 

The Bopper

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#6
Fenster said:
Electric fence was busted.  I think a live power line would be a whole different experiment.  I'm no expert, but I do work in the industry and I think the power from a line could make the jump.
Busted?

They're doing it wrong, then.
 
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Anonymous

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#7
The Bopper said:
Busted?

They're doing it wrong, then.
Hmmm...they pissed on the electric fence and got no shock.  Not sure what they could have done wrong.
 

Smirking Chupacabra

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#8
Fenster said:
Electric fence was busted.  I think a live power line would be a whole different experiment.  I'm no expert, but I do work in the industry and I think the power from a line could make the jump.
And by the industry, you mean the business ...
 

Bill Lehecka

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#9
The Bopper said:
Busted?

They're doing it wrong, then.
Urine doesn't come out as a constant stream.  It comes out as a group of urine pellets, not connected to each other.  Electricity would run if it's a constant stream, but because there's a minor gap between the urine pellets, electricty doesn't run up it.
 

DoberDadinMD

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#10
Bill Lehecka said:
Urine doesn't come out as a constant stream.  It comes out as a group of urine pellets, not connected to each other.  Electricity would run if it's a constant stream, but because there's a minor gap between the urine pellets, electricty doesn't run up it.
If your urine is coming out in pellet form, you may want to see a Dr.  ;)
 

stevis

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#11
DoberDadinMD said:
If your urine is coming out in pellet form, you may want to see a Dr.  ;)
Zod is right--streams of liquid generally aren't continuous.  Set up a strobe a light as the only illumination in your kitchen while your faucet is running, you should be able to see how the water is breaking up.  Time it just right it looks like you have hovering droplets of water.

Never tried that while urinating, but the principle should work...you'd need a steady hand and surprisingly constant stream though to get a good look at it.  Plus the faucet thing is much better to show off to the neighborhood kids. 

Anyway, it shouldn't work...maybe with a really high voltage transmission line, you could get some gap jumping, but all the way seems unlikely.  More likely physical contact was made somehow...time for a Mythbusters follow-up, no doubt.
 

Duckworth Lewis

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#13
stevis said:
Never tried that while urinating, but the principle should work...you'd need a steady hand and surprisingly constant stream though to get a good look at it.  Plus the faucet thing is much better to show off to the neighborhood kids. 
After you've rounded them up in a van that says "free candy"?
 

Tsunami

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#16
Saint Drogo said:
So in other words, the Mythbusters have proven that this man is not really dead
It was just a flesh wound.... albeit very sensitive flesh.
 
A

Anonymous

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#18
Tsunami said:
It was just a flesh wound.... albeit very sensitive flesh.
Pimentel said there will be an autopsy but burn marks indicated the way the electricity traveled through Messenger's body.  :icon_bea:
 

The Bopper

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#24
Look, until YOU whiz on an electric fence, I'm calling bullshit on the Mythbusters.

And for the record, I have pissed on an electric fence. It stings.

Myth = Not Busted.
 
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