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Man electrocuted by his PC

By Rilla927
Aug 4, 2007
  1. Perspiring man electrocuted by his PC

    A 20-year old student in Shanghai's Yangpu District perished after being "electrocuted by his computer." Reportedly, the man removed the external case from his desktop to prevent it from overheating in the non-air conditioned room, and when his legs came into contact with the innards, the resulting shock left him deceased. Initial investigations by local police confirmed that he was indeed electrocuted, yet there was no reason given as to why the individual refused to switch on the cooling system.

    http://www.engadget.com/2007/07/31/perspiring-man-electrocuted-by-his-pc/
     
  2. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 10,074   +13

    it only takes about 3 amperes to kill an adult....
     
  3. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,967   +955

    Um.....

    Way less than that if delivered subcutaneously!

    Although voltage plays a considerable part. As I understand it, Europeans suffer a higher mortality rate due to electrocution than those of us in the U.S.A, due to the higher European voltage standard.

    Of course, given enough time, stupidity, fearlessness, and resolve, you could probably kill yourself with a toothpick.
     
  4. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    "It is a teacup" - Riddick

    It takes very little electricity to kill someone, given the right circumstances. However, death by electrocution from sticking your leg into your computer, I find that very interesting. Given the <12V your system runs on, he must've stuck his leg into the PSU or something, since 12V just isn't gonna penetrate your skin....
     
  5. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 12,647   +323

    He was probably running one of those 600W PSUs that came with his $20 case. It probably then had poor insulation around the mains in wire internally so it was touching up against some metal just waiting for somewhere to go. Or he bumped the case and nudged a bare wire just enough to touch the metal casing of the PSU and therefore computer frame.
     
  6. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,967   +955

    Ring Around the Rosie......A Pocket Full of Phase Differential..?

    I think everybody's assuming modern European and US wiring standards, while interpreting this story. This could have been an "out of phase issue". The wide blade (neutral) on almost all US plugs prohibits this from occurring. Under certain conditions simply putting a plug in the wall socket in reverse of a nearby electrical device then touching both of them together, can blast you into the 5th dimension. Keith Richards was nearly killed on stage when his guitar touched an out of phase microphone stand. He was unconscious for a time.
    And yes CMH, ultimately it's the voltage that becomes the killer since volts signify electrical pressure, while amperage is quantity. As the voltage increases it's effect on muscles heightens. After a certain point, the muscles contract into a no release situation, where you couldn't let go even if you were still conscious and desperately wanting to.
    Subcutaneously even a tiny amount of electricity can kill you, with numbers reaching down to microamperes. Saline is on of the best electrical conductors, and blood is pretty gosh darn salty. during open heart surgery the defibrillators used are tiny and are applied directly to the heart, their charge is only a few watt seconds, compared to the 300+ of the ones the EMTs use to restart you.
    It would more newsworthy to blame the accident in China on the computer, rather than a rusty old out of phase lamp sitting next to the computer.
    Or, those crappy, leaky, Chinese capacitors in the PSU could have gotten him.
     
  7. Masque

    Masque TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,212

    ....or no ground, which he conveniently provided.
     
  8. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 10,967   +955

    Holy Martyrdom, Batman!

    I just hope you guys aren't suggesting that all college dorm rooms in China aren't wired with GFCI circuit breakers. Why I'm sure they have building inspectors there weekly.
    There is a possibility that the Poppy crop may have come in. Whatever that means.
     
  9. CMH

    CMH TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,573   +9

    Yeah, I don't think he's going to be leaving an open wound kicking around in the insides of a computer....

    I've never heard of out-of-phase stuff before....


    Either way, this would be an excellent article to dissuade noobies from removing their side panels to cool down their PCs (which almost never works anyway).
     
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