12 Responses

  1. FMH at |

    When everything is burnt, it is hard to find an explanation for a fire sometimes. This however doesn’t make the wick effect “just guessing” like you wrote. A lot of the examples you show here are classic examples of the wick effect. The main characteristics are a corpse burnt completely to ashes with little to no damage to the surroundings. (just look in wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wick_effect it even mentions your 2010 example as an incident of the wick effect)
    Given how easy it is to set yourself aflame and die – especially in a narrow space like a car, I would not label any of these cases as misterious. Artificial fiber clothes, hairspray, pillows, old car seats – all these things can be set on fire with very little effort.

    For some time I worked with mentally handicapped people in a big insitution. While I did my service there one of the workers was severly injured with large second degree burns – from standing to close to a Christmas candle. He wore a cheap polyester sweater which caught fire instantly and set him ablaze completely. He only survived because it happend right next to a fire extinguisher and a lot of people where around.

    But if you as me, that was a prime example of spontanous combustion. Spontanous combustion doesn’t have to mean that there is no logical explanation to it, does it? Especially since there is no way for a human body to catch fire without any source of heat from outside.

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    1. David at |

      There is no way a body can combust with no heat source? are you aware that the body is composed primarily of extremely combustible elements i.e: oxygen, hydrogen, carbon. mixing of gases in the perfect atmosphere can cause combustion and even explosions. Even water (H2O) hydrogen (extremely flammible) oxygen (extremely flammible) if the situation is just perfect for it to occur it very well can

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      1. FMH at |

        You say it: Mixing them in a perfect atmosphere. Like a test tube. And you STILL need an external heat source.
        How do you get the hydrogen out of a human body? How do you set it on fire without heat?
        The only way to make the hydrogen and oxygen in water explode is if you set them free through electrophoresis. Applied to a human body, the electricity to produce enough oxygen and hydrogen for an explosion could well set clothes on fire and produce the wick effect. Water is not flammable.

        Let’s look at a widely known non-flammable substance with your understanding of chemistry: Asbestos. It was used for heat isolations because it stays unaffected by fire even under the most heavy condition. Even the Roman historian Plinus the Elder writes about its quality and uses. It’s (Mg)3Si2O5(OH). We have magnesium – a metal that will burn with a bright, hot, white flame if set on fire and we have lots of oxygen and hydrogen. Why doesn’t it burn, huh?

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  2. Peter Boucher at |

    To the author of this list. “IMAGE TOO DISTURBING ??” Maybe you should rent out the movie “Schindler’s List” or see pictures of the Jewish Holocaust if that isn’t horrifying enough for others to see. I put this list up with UFO sightings or the so-called apocalypse that creationists and fundamentalists are brought up to believe. Its all phony as far as I am concerned…….

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    1. Liz at |

      I personally felt the “image so gross” was kind of disrespectful and immature. While I respect the choice to leave very graphic pictures out of the list, I think the wording could have been more sensitive to the individual and families. How would you feel if this happened to a loved one and people were like “ewww that’s so groooooooss!”

      Cool list topic though! SHC is very interesting.

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  3. Andrew Handley at |

    FMH: Thanks for your comment. The Wikipedia page on the wick effect specifically mentions that it’s just a theory. The idea behind these cases, the thing that makes them “mysterious,” is that in nearly all of them there was no identifiable external source of heat. As tragic as your own story is, it wouldn’t fall under the accepted parameters for spontaneous combustion. Maybe there is a logical explanation for all of these cases, maybe not. Maybe we’ll never know.

    Robert: Whether or not you believe the cause of the deaths, the images are still very graphic. We try to provide bizarre information but will never rely on shock value to do so. Anyone can Google the names to get the pictures.

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    1. FMH at |

      I would say, in most cases the source of heat was a cigarrette. What traces does a cigarrette leave when completely burnt? None. Maybe you can find traces of a lighter, but if the victim used matches there will be no evidence for a heat source. It’s that simple.

      The wick effect is a theory for some cases, because all the evidence is burnt, so you can’t be 100% sure. But it is the most plausible theory and it has been proofed to exist in experiment (the pig the BBC burnt) and in actual cases. For example there were two murder cases where the body was soaked with a very small amount of flamable liquid and burned in exactly the same way as bodies which “spontanously combusted”, and several people who burnt in their beds with lighter and cigarretes still on their night tray. None of these deaths can be counted as spontanous combustion because the proof that it happend from other reasons is there. If that proof would be burnt, you would probably say it was “spontanous combustion”

      In my opinion it is like finding a broken body below a cliff. Nobody saw how the person fell, so it must be a case of “spontanous massive trauma”.

      Nobody ever witnessed spontanous combustion, but many people witnessed other people setting themselfs on fire. There is no way a body can just start burning.

      The wick effect itself is real and can be proofed to exist and work. It has to remain a theory in some special cases, because you simply can’t find any intact evidence.

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  4. Johnny B. at |

    I for one completely agree with the author. Spontaneous combustion was actually studied and proven possible in the late 1940′s by German scientists working for the Nazis party. There was a correlation with methane build up in red blood cells caused by alcohol and cigarette smoke combined with lack of sleep. The 2007 documentary of the Johnny Blaze in “Ghost Rider” was a bastardization of the concept but was an accurate depiction of what would happen to the human body during spontaneous combustion, if in fact that human was not a demon. I for one applaud your work, good sir.

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    1. FMH at |

      This made my day ^^

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  5. Donna at |

    very horific if u ask me makes me wonder now. is philly experiment also hot like that?? why them what did they do to themselves to make themselves so much like wood to lightning or metal to lightning.
    makes ya wanna go to turn aircons on . anyway i have a PBG its hot same thing as philly exp. i mean i dont get hot i can use it by computor signals to go wherever i want. the problem is when it returns its very hot it melts metal quicker than u can blink an eye it also uses renewable energy as its moving source or moves around via renewable energy.i dont know i dont wanna dabble no more in it after looking at all them pictures i saw on net of ppl burned as qjuck as seconds kinda scares me . but …..its prolly worth looking into cuz of the heat it holds …..yet its blue to look at like a cool colour pulsates like a heart does go brighter n darker i cant explain what i have i found it yrs ago in a old house we been mates since as i was lonely and well i had no one else i dont think PBG burns ppl i dont see it doing that kinda thing its too kind too cuddly and different

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    1. Nic at |

      That made absolutely NO sense!

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  6. Robert at |

    I love how hard core intellectual materialists try to debunk EVERYTHING under the sun with the most mundane explanation possible. The problem with people that are habitually “debunking” everything is that their hardcore materialistic beliefs about the world excludes the possibilty that there are unseen and unknown forces, these people think they understand the world and the whole universe and that there is nothing new to discover. I loathe closed minded debunkers so very very much. I think theres atleast a little bit of truth in everything.

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