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Woman Killed In Wii-Related Competition 784

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the natural-selection dept.
snuffin writes to tell us that a local radio competition to "hold your wee for a Wii" has ended with a Sacramento woman dead from water poisoning. From the article: "An Associated Press interview with another contestant, named James Ybarra, claimed that contestants were initially given eight ounce bottles of water to drink every fifteen minutes, with larger bottles being used once contestants began to drop out. According to Ybarra, 'They told us if you don't feel like you can do this, don't put your health at risk.' He described the victim as 'a nice lady' and that 'she was telling me about her family and her three kids and how she was doing it for her kids.'"
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Woman Killed In Wii-Related Competition

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  • Mmm... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by EinZweiDrei (955497) * <einzweidrei@wildmail.com> on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:46PM (#17617514)
    What a stupid world.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward
      So did she win?
    • Re:Mmm... (Score:4, Funny)

      by sentientbeing (688713) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:54PM (#17617696)
      For those that couldnt hold their water there was a runner-up prize -

      'Hold a turd, you might come third!'
    • Re:Mmm... (Score:5, Funny)

      by x2A (858210) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:07PM (#17617878)
      Yeah I nearly pissed myself laughing when I heard about it yesterday, but the irony was too much to handle, and I passed out.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Divebus (860563)
      Who'd a' thunk that? That's the damnedest thing! Note to self: 8 glasses of water a day is an upper limit.
  • Killed?? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by celardore (844933) * on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:46PM (#17617516)
    A woman wasn't killed, she died as a result of self induced water intoxication. It's a difference that means a lot. The headline makes it sound like a sport killing of some kind. Would have been more appropriate to say "Woman dies In Wii-Related Competition".
    • Re:Killed?? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by GiovanniZero (1006365) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:56PM (#17617726) Homepage Journal
      This title is completely ridiculous. It's sensationalist and makes it look like someone died using the Wii. The womans death has nothing to do with a Wii, it could have been a competition for anything.
  • by Derekloffin (741455) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:47PM (#17617528)
    I knew you could drown in the stuff, but dying from drinking too much of it? Wow. Didn't know that.
    • by User 956 (568564) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:53PM (#17617674) Homepage
      Ne quid nimis. Aristotle was right.
    • by x2A (858210) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:03PM (#17617820)
      Here in UK there've been a few "ecstacy deaths", last a few years ago, that turned out not to be the ecstacy as such, but drinking too much water to avoid dehydration and overcompensating. You need to replace your body salts when drinking, or they get flushed out, and organs will fail.

      Other risks come from the chlorine put in tap water to stop bacteria from growing - well the bacteria in your guts you kind of need, for digestion etc. Boiling the water first evaporates off the chlorine, otherwise, you're disinfecting yourself everytime you drink it, an accumulative effect.

      • by Pojut (1027544) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:19PM (#17618060) Homepage
        This is why they reccommend when you have a fever you drink Gatorade or some other sport drink...because these help keep your electrolytes high, the chances of your dying from (or being affected by) over-hydration are reduced drastically
      • by leathered (780018) on Monday January 15, 2007 @04:46PM (#17619332)
        Other risks come from the chlorine put in tap water to stop bacteria from growing - well the bacteria in your guts you kind of need, for digestion etc. Boiling the water first evaporates off the chlorine, otherwise, you're disinfecting yourself everytime you drink it, an accumulative effect.,

        Speaking as a former water scientist, this is complete BS. The residual levels of chlorine in drinking water in the UK are minimal, usually no more than 1 mg/l, and are maintained as a precaution to prevent contamination in the ditribution system. There is no way that this amount is capable of destroying bacteria in the gut, and chlorine being the highly reactive element that it is will combine with the first thing it finds when it hits your stomach and render it useless as a disinfectant.
    • by R3d M3rcury (871886) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:13PM (#17617962) Journal
      Water--or dihydrogen monoxide--is a dangerous chemical that we treat far too lightly! Water contributes to global warming, soil erosion, and caused the levee failures in New Orleans!

      Become informed of the dangers of Dihydrogen Monoxide [dhmo.org] before it's too late!
  • sheesh (Score:5, Informative)

    by yagu (721525) * <yayagu@@@gmail...com> on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:47PM (#17617534) Journal

    This is not some mysterious malady. The radio station is off the scale negligent for putting contestants in the position of potential serious harm:

    I'd had this argument many times with a friend about my water intake. I've always known my intake was fine (hint: coffee counts...), but in the course of that discussion I found many articles on the problems one could encounter by drinking too much water.

    I won't claim any person on the street should know the dangers of drinking too much water, but the people putting on this contest (sorry, stunt) could have recognized they were in deep waters with a modicum of research.

    I'm not much for lawsuits, but I hope the radio station that put on this stunt makes significant remedy to the lady's family.

    • Re:sheesh (Score:5, Funny)

      by blibbler (15793) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:40PM (#17618412)
      I'm not much for lawsuits, but I hope the radio station that put on this stunt makes significant remedy to the lady's family

      Well at least they should give her three kids a wii.
    • Re:sheesh (Score:5, Informative)

      by phasm42 (588479) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:40PM (#17618420)
      This article [playfuls.com] has more details; they say that a nurse had called during the contest to warn them about it:

      During the contest, a nurse called in to the station warn of the dangers of drinking too much water quickly. Her worries were dismissed by the disc jockey, The Bee reported.
      They also mention that the winner felt pretty sick afterwards as well.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by alw53 (702722)
        Hyponatremia is actually more common than is dehydration among people rescued from Grand Canyon hikes. If you google Carol Tufts you'll see an account of one woman who drank 10 glasses of water per day and almost died. The conventional wisdom of 8 glasses per day is dangerous nonsense.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by hattig (47930)
        During the contest, a nurse called in to the station warn of the dangers of drinking too much water quickly. Her worries were dismissed by the disc jockey

        That fact makes the station (and the DJ) criminally negligible for the death. Well, In My Opinion as IANAL and I'm also not American, so I don't know what corporation-friendly laws you will have to counteract this.

        They were warned. They still went ahead. That's worse than manslaughter, it's not just being ignorant when you are told by a fucking nurse that
  • by Jesselnz (866138) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:49PM (#17617576)
    Who the hell came up with that name? See kids, this is why crack is illegal.
  • by RobertB-DC (622190) * on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:49PM (#17617592) Homepage Journal
  • by meta-monkey (321000) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:51PM (#17617630) Journal
    In other news, a Kansas City man died after slipping in pools of urine surrounding PS3 boxes at a local Best Buy.
  • isotonic drink ... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by AtomicBomb (173897) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:53PM (#17617666) Homepage
    Before calling the poor woman a lemming/ a candidate for Darwin's award blahblahblah, I got to ask why can't they (the organisers) supply isotonic sports drink in this sort of competition?

    Water intoxication is more common than many of us would like to think. It is part of the reason why many marathons now supply sports drink in addition to water. Newbies in many cases either don't drink enough or cannot stop drinking until water drains them from the inside.
  • Her family (Score:5, Funny)

    by inKubus (199753) on Monday January 15, 2007 @02:54PM (#17617684) Homepage Journal
    Sorry in advance:

    Her family is probably pretty "Pissed". This contest really went down the "Toilet". I can't believe how it's been "Sprayed" all over the news. Talk about a "Drinking Problem". As said to the second place contestant: "Urine" luck! I guess she didn't really get a fair "Shake".

  • Dangerous! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Aladrin (926209) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:01PM (#17617802)
    Dihydrogen Monoxide is Dangerous! They've been telling us for years, but we just don't listen!

    http://www.dhmo.org/ [dhmo.org]
  • by PingSpike (947548) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:19PM (#17618052)
    Clearly this water stuff is a dangerous substance that needs to be controlled. I think it should only be available from behind the pharmacy counter, that way kids don't get ahold of it and drink themselves to death.
  • by AceM2 (655504) * on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:20PM (#17618068) Journal
    With such a gigantic user community, I am always amazed how long it takes Slashdot to pick up stories. When I first started reading, I was finding out about new and obscure stories and events left and right it seemed, but now I'm hearing stories like this on the local radio long before it his Slashdot. Is it because there literally are so many stories being submitted, or is the staff and community at Slashdot just that behind lately?
  • by BobSutan (467781) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:24PM (#17618150)
    ...did she win?
  • by elviscious (681985) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:24PM (#17618164)
    From the article:
    Water intoxication (also known as hyperhydration or water poisoning) is a potentially fatal disturbance in brain function that results when the normal balance of electrolytes in the body is upset by a rapid intake of water.

    From Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]:
    Water intoxication (also known as hyperhydration or water poisoning) is a potentially fatal disturbance in brain function that results when the normal balance of electrolytes in the body is pushed outside of safe limits by a very rapid intake of water.

    What is this 8th grade English class?
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      [UPDATE - 4.34pm PST, 01/15/07 - Wikipedia reference to water intoxication now correctly credited - our apologies.]

      Nice.

  • Obligatory link (Score:5, Informative)

    by pctainto (325762) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:32PM (#17618296) Homepage
    Wikipedia article [wikipedia.org]

    Basically, the combination of you drinking too much water and not getting rid of it throws your electrolytes out of whack... you have too much water, so the concentration of electrolytes isn't high enough for your body to carry signals. It happens a lot with marathon runners. Especially runners that don't stop to pee. Many people have died from this even though they were getting enough because they refused to pee out the excess water.

  • by sheldon (2322) on Monday January 15, 2007 @03:33PM (#17618314)
    I'm not one to support frivolous lawsuits, but when I first heard about this contest a week or so back I wondered if they were aware that drinking too much water can be extremely dangerous. Apparently not, the "you can quit at any time if you feel bad" wasn't much of a disclaimer. From all the reports I've read, they didn't even consult with doctors.

    I'm sad that my initial assumption that this would turn out bad came true. I'd rather be wrong on things like this.
  • Gatorade? (Score:5, Funny)

    by HunterZ (20035) on Monday January 15, 2007 @04:14PM (#17618928) Journal
    Why the heck didn't they use Gatorade instead of water?
    • Re:Gatorade? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday January 16, 2007 @12:05AM (#17624632)
      Why is this modded funny?

      There are two ways that Gatorade (or Powerade or most any sports drink) would be vastly superior to water. First, the sugar content in a sports drink raises the blood sugar, causing a feeling of satiation. It would be far more difficult to consume two liters of a sports drink than two liters of water (the amount that the lady drank). It's somewhat self-regulating. Second, the isotonic solution wouldn't disrupt the balance in electrolytes, which is the cause of death for this lady.

      The use of Gatorade would be safer, by far.
  • by RedSynapse (90206) on Monday January 15, 2007 @05:11PM (#17619784)
    The KDND website has a list of all the companies that advertise with them [endonline.com].

    I've put together the following email addresses of KDND's sponsors, so if you think that the folks at KDND are a bunch of negligent twits who probably don't deserve their advertising dollars then why not email these companies and let them know?

    Info@urban-body.com, hr@wyotech.com, smichaels@sierracollege.edu, foundation@sierracollege.edu, marc.goff@US.REDBULL.COM, cs_online@albertsons.com, lgradisher@jewels.com, mediarelations@officedepot.com, communityrelations@officedepot.com, corpcsf@wellsfargo.com, home.pa-newsroom.168d00@statefarm.com, admin@PowerTripBev.com, kburns@ckr.com, chopkins@ckr.com, customerservice@partsamerica.com, oshgift@osh.com, customerservice@tillys.com, info@heald.edu, info@louderlaw.com, dale@sleeptrain.com, webmaster@NissanUSA.com, joseph.l.goode@bankofamerica.com You can also contact KDND's general sales manager at fhormell@entercom.com

  • by rainer_d (115765) on Monday January 15, 2007 @05:35PM (#17620166) Homepage
    ...water bottles in the US of A don't carry some sort of fancy warning label like "Drinking to much water can kill you".

God may be subtle, but he isn't plain mean. -- Albert Einstein

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