In 2018, a report was released in India dabbed death by selfie which made rounds on news platforms worldwide. Over 250 people were reported to have died while looking for the perfect pic for social media between 2011 and 2018 which is really distressing. Since 2018, the number of people dying while pulling off stunts to take perfect Insta shots has only increased, hence the question; Just how much is a selfie worth? Well, a great selfie may be worth views and likes on social media but definitely not human life which is why it is never worth it risking your life for one. Here is a look at the 10 saddest stories of people that died while trying to get that perfect selfie in the recent past.
The Perfect Waterfall Shot
Waterfalls are especially dangerous selfie spots since things tend to be slippery and death is just one slip away. As of July 2021, Sophia Cheung, an Instagram influencer from Hong Kong had over 35,000 followers. The biggest attraction to her posts were the risky selfies she posted taken on cliff edges, steep banks and tall buildings. In July 2021 while taking selfies at the Ha Pak Lai Park in Hong Kong, Cheung slipped and fell to her death. His death only became one of the many deaths involving social media influencers in recent years.
The Grenade Selfie
Labinsk is a small town in Russia near the country’s border with Georgia and anyone who knows the area will tell you that it was a centre of soviet military activity for years. In 2017, a man called Alexander Chechik came across an unexploded grenade in the town and decided to take pictures with it. He managed to take multiple pictures and share with friends who warned him to be careful. The next time most of them heard from him again was in the news after the police found the remains of his exploded car with him inside. It was one of the most tragic selfie-of-death horrors in 2017.
The Railway Track Selfie
Bangkok, Thailand is another hotspot for ultimate selfie stunts and the train tracks are not spared. In 2018, a group of people in Thailand went onto the train tracks to get their perfect selfie. While taking a selfie on one track with a static train, they failed to notice another train coming on the next track and their legs got caught up under it leading to severe injuries. One woman died from her injuries while a male friend sustained injuries.
The Group Selfie On Top Of A Train
India is one of the deadliest selfie-of-death countries in the world and the last place anyone could try to take a selfie is the top of an electric train. In 2019, Mohammad Faisal and an 11-year-old boy of Maqdampur, India were taking photos near a train station when they decided to climb onto the roof of a cargo train and get better shots. Faisal accidentally touched a 36,000-volt wire and got stuck on it dying instantly. The 11 year old he was taking selfies with was thrown off the train to the ground and survived with burns.
The Walrus Selfie
Walruses are mighty beasts that can be pretty deadly if you get too close but they are also magnificent and often playful. All you have to do when visiting them is be on alert which is why you don’t turn your back on one even for a selfie. Jia Lijun was fond of one Walrus in the Xixiakou wildlife park in Liaoning, China and had taken photos of it in the past. On one trip to the zoo in 2016, he went too far by trying to take a selfie with his favourite walrus when it pulled him into the water while trying to play with him. The incident ended tragically with the zoo caretaker that tried to save him getting drowned alongside the poor man.
The Charging Bull Selfie
Bullfights are famous in Spain but they are also very dangerous which is why civilians are advised to stay in the protected area. Mr. David Gonzalez Lopez was watching one such event in 2015 when one bull went wild. The normal human instinct would be to run for your life, but the man decided to record the bull charging at him instead and even left the protected area while taking his selfies. He didn’t notice one bull charging him from the side though, and that is how he met his death as he sustained fatal injuries to the neck.
The Pistol Selfie
No one needs to be cautioned that taking selfies with a loaded gun is a dangerous stunt. In 2016, a man from Concrete, Washington was taking selfies with his girlfriend’s gun when the worst happened. The two were allegedly playing with the gun loading and unloading it while taking pictures with it. Unfortunately, one bullet remained in the chamber and when he accidentally pulled the trigger while taking the selfie, he shot himself in the face and that was the end for him.
The Fatal Cliff Selfie
If you really want the best cliff edge selfie, you should probably photoshop one since most social media users don’t care that much about the difference anyways. Cabo Da Roca, in Portugal, happens to be home to one of the most beautiful cliffs in the world. In 2014, a polish couple with their two children were visiting when the parents decided to take a selfie. They crossed the safety barrier to get their perfect shot. Sadly the parents plummeted to their deaths while the little ones watched causing horror that shocked the whole world.
The Cockpit Selfie
Watching your pilot turn his back to take a selfie in the cockpit should be the most shocking sight to any passenger on an aeroplane. In 2015, 29-year-old Amritpal Singh who was a life-loving pilot that enjoyed taking selfies with his passengers in his cockpit lost control of a Cessna 150 in Colorado and crashed killing himself and his passenger. Unfortunately, the camera survived and investigators determined that the lighting from the camera’s flash caused him to lose control of the aircraft before the fatal crash.
The Tragic Mountainside Selfie in Oregon
Michelle Casey, 21, was taking selfies against a retaining wall off Highway 101 at the Neahkahnie Viewpoint when the tragic incident occurred. The barrier that was supposed to keep her safe turned into her killer when she slipped while posing for the selfie. She was with her boyfriend while taking the pics but he wasn’t injured. The 100ft drop off the mountainside is unsurvivable and she died from her injuries.