Dr Felix Analyses a Century’s Worth of Darwin Awards data to Reveal the Dumbest Ways to Die

Dr Felix Analyses a Century’s Worth of Darwin Awards data to Reveal the Dumbest Ways to Die

Men are seven times more likely than women to receive the dubious honour of a Darwin Award for the dumbest ways to die according to a comprehensive new research study by the registered online doctor and pharmacy service, Dr Felix. From a man stabbing himself to test if his jacket was stab proof to self-castration after losing a rugby bet, the alarming number of weird and downright stupid ways to die casts an eye-watering glimpse at the evolution of mankind.

The Darwin Awards are tongue-in-cheek prizes which recognize individuals who remove themselves from the gene pool through their own stupidity, therefore supporting survival of the human race. The Darwin Awards database covers a period of more than 100 years, with the Awards themselves launched in 1994.

When it comes to thrill-seeking behaviour, men outnumber women seven to one according to the Dr Felix cluster of stupidity analysis. Men aged between 20 -29 are most likely to show poor judgement and receive a Darwin Award.  However, women are more likely to be in the company of other women when doing something life threateningly stupid. “When women were awarded Darwin Awards, they were three times as likely to be with other women than with a man. It appears that women are more likely to provoke stupidity among themselves than in an opposite-sex interaction,” explains Tamsin Nicholson, Editor.

“The pre-frontal cortex – the ‘rational’ part of the brain – continues to develop into the mid-to-late twenties, which may explain why Darwin Awards are most commonly earned in one’s twenties. Risk-taking behaviour is moderated in the thirties, though it’s not completely suppressed.”

When it comes to location, the USA has the unwanted honour of the country with the most Darwin Awards to its name, followed by the UK and Australia. In each of the top three countries, automobiles were the most common reason for a Darwin Award being bestowed. In the rest of the top 10, Darwin Awards were most commonly given for stupidity involving falling (Canada), animals and electrocution (Germany), sex and automobiles (Italy) and planes, poisoning and sex (Mexico). Explosions, crushing and drowning were also common.

While accidents involving vehicles and falling are the most common, Darwin Awards have been given for a whole range of ‘what were they thinking’ mishaps including a pair of British construction workers who drilled a hole through a platform and then fell through – as a result of drilling the piece they were standing on. Across the Pond, a US parachute instructor forgot to wear a parachute when filming a lesson, another man choked on a nipple pastie he’d removed from a burlesque dancer and a fellow American was crushed by a car after asking his wife to drive over him for sexual pleasure.

Tamsin Nicholson added, “The sheer volume of stupid acts is absolutely staggering but what’s more surprising is the ridiculousness of some of the accidents and mishaps. In our final analysis, the top two countries go head-to-head. In terms of ratios, British women are 50 percent more likely to be awarded a Darwin Award than American women. American men, however, are almost three times as likely to lose their life in a way that earns them a Darwin Award.

“When comparing British and American awardees by age, university-aged Americans are the most likely to receive a Darwin Award. For Britons, stupidity is evenly split between age 22 (just after university) and 28 – shortly after the end of a quarter-life crisis.”

To view Dr Felix’s findings in full, learn more about the methodology behind the study and to find out more about Dr Felix’s services visit: https://www.drfelix.co.uk/exploring-darwin-awards/