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The Weird History Of Toilet Deaths

[Music] the weird history of toilet deaths toilets may seem harmless after all we use them multiple times a day but don’t be fooled these disarming devices have caused a surprising number of deaths throughout history let’s take a look at a few of them today taking the plunge the erfurt latrine disaster 1184 in the year 1184 in the german town of erfurt there was one particularly infamous toilet disaster nobles had traveled from across the holy roman empire in an attempt to negotiate peace between the feuding louis iii of the ringgia and archbishop conrad of maine’s nobles took their seats in an annex of saint peter’s church eagerly waiting for the assembly to begin but no sooner had the gathering commenced when all of a sudden the wooden floor of the annex collapsed sending the men plummeting into the latrine in the cellar all in all it’s estimated that 60 people drowned in the excrement below sponge on a stick roman infection circa 753 bc to 476 a.d romans had a pretty sophisticated sanitation system for their time but they were not immune to the dangers of toilets since toilet paper hadn’t been invented yet they used sponges on a stick to clean themselves up these sponge sticks were considered communal however and were shared between strangers passing along intestinal parasites with them if you were wealthy enough to have a toilet in your home in this period you might have been even worse off in certain circumstances toilets usually drain straight down into cesspits which were often located right next to the kitchen as a result this generally enabled bacteria and parasites to travel up into the home where food was prepared what’s worse is that the river tiber was known to have flooded on occasion sloshing human waste up into people’s homes not only did this contribute to rife dysentery and roundworm in rome but it stunk a whole lot too bathroom butchery godfrey the hunchback 1069 not all toilet deaths were accidental though in 1069 the counts of flanders and holland desired to get rid of their enemy the duke of lower lorraine godfrey the hunchback they went about this by hiring an assassin who found a creative way to execute his plan in the middle of the night he snuck underneath the latrines that had been built into the side of the castle wall next to godfrey’s bedroom when godfrey woke up to relieve himself the cunning assassin stabbed him up the rear end with a spear it took a few days for godfrey to die but the assassination was a success explosive diarrhea toilet explosions from ancient to victorian times from ancient rome right through to the victorian era it was not uncommon to hear reports of exploding toilets this proved a particular issue with public latrines which saw a lot of use before ordinary households gained access to running water if release valves were not working properly the buildup of noxious gases could sometimes increase pressure until boom this generally resulted in serious injuries from cuts and burns on the backside to actual fatalities with a chance of being launched into the air at your local latrine ever present maybe it’s not so difficult to understand the growth and popularity of the private toilet stinking ships german submarine u1206 1945 fast forward to 1945 on board the german submarine u1206 an engineer had been called in to investigate when the toilet was found to have been acting up mistakenly pulling the valves in the wrong order however the engineers stood by helplessly as seawater gushed from the toilet into the main hall where it reacted with a battery on the ship the contact between the two substances generated deadly chlorine gas forcing the crew to quickly return to the surface to release it but as they resurfaced they were spotted by british planes who promptly sunk the german vessel many of the crew managed to survive by deploying life rafts to get them to shore but four crew members died as a result of the malfunction so what are your thoughts on toilets now suddenly they don’t feel so safe let us know in the comments below
Video source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCFd2NVbPpY

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