b3ta.com qotw
You are not logged in. Login or Signup
Home » Question of the Week » Tales of the Unexplained » Post 189797 | Search
This is a question Tales of the Unexplained

Flying saucers. Big Cats. Men in Black. Satan walking the Earth. Derek Acorah, also walking the Earth...

Tell us your stories of the supernatural. WoooOOOooOO!

suggestion by Kaol

(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 10:03)
Pages: Latest, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, ... 1

« Go Back

Fan Death
It's not ghosts and it's not aliens, but in my opinion it could easily be classified as paranormal.

Over here in South Korea, you are warned every summer not to sleep with an electric fan on, and if you use a fan, make sure a window is open. Or you could die. Every year, there are a few dozen reports of people who die due to electric fans.

Last year, a group of men entered into a suicide pact and slept in a hotel room with the fan running. The next morning they were all alive so they tried again the next night. One of them decided he wanted to live and he unplugged the fan, so he was credited by the media for saving their lives.

This is seriously something that everyone believes. Intelligent, educated, informed people, even doctors. I remember having a conversation with a doctor about fan death, and he was trying to explain to me the numerous theories about how fans kill you in your sleep. They are:
-the fan blowing on your bare skin cools your body too fast and you die of hypothermia
-the fan creates a vortex over your mouth and nose, vacuuming out all the air from your lungs and suffocating you
-using up or pushing away all the oxygen and giving you carbon dioxide poisoning
-chopping up the oxygen molecules so there is no breathable O2

To me, all of these suggestions seem counterintuitive. When I sleep, I have the fan on, and I've been doing that my whole life, summer and winter. If the fan's not on, I feel like the air's stuffy, probably as the air expelling from my lungs lingers over my face. So fans help me breathe easier. Also, if I ever get too cold, I just move a bit or cover up with a blanket.

In all of this insanity, who would you expect to be the most anti-fan death? Not the media obviously as they're the ones fueling it. Not the cops, because if they don't want to investigate a death too closely, it's easy to just write down "fan death." Well, what about the damn fan manufacturers themselves? Don't they have a vested interest in educating people that they do not manufacture lethal home appliances? Nope, they believe in fan death too. If you buy an electric fan, it contains a warning that you shouldn't fall asleep with the fan on. Also, all fans come with timers, so you can set them to turn off before morning.

My wife believed in fan death at first, and she used to yell at me that there's a scientific reason for it. She gave up complaining after we slept with the fan on all through the summer.

If you don't believe a whole country is capable of thinking this, just click on this link and read point number 1. This is a press release put out by a government agency in 2006.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 11:24, 7 replies)
That's madness
But oddly, my mother believes the same thing, without reason, and she's never been to South Korea (she didn't venture outside Europe 'til she was 41).

I'd be interested in learning how this rumour started, and why it persists.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 11:36, closed)
On Fan Death...
I was regularly looked at with horror and old women muttered under their breath about death wishes when I was blase about sleeping with the fan on when I lived in Korea.

I got in terrible trouble one time when I decided to test it out when I was in the elementary school classroom I taught in. I closed the doors and windows of the classroom, turned out the light, and turned on the fan in the class. The kids were puzzled to say the least.

I then sat at my desk and pretended to go to sleep.

The screams of the kids could be heard across the school and the headmaster ran across from his office and barged down the door. I had to claim ignorance of the fan death and pretended I was doing an experiment on photosynthesis.

I just managed to wiggle out of it.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 11:39, closed)
I'm gobsmacked
I really truly am. That's mental.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 11:39, closed)
have a click!
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 11:42, closed)
Nobody's really sure, but I've heard vague reference from a few people that Koreans used to believe in fan death for more superstitious reasons a few decades ago, such as "it saps your qi." Maybe they just updated it with a pseudoscientific explanation rather than stopped believing it.

Another possibility is that there used to be a lot of deaths from carbon monoxide poisoning because they used certain types of heaters indoors, and that somehow resulted in a fear of fans as well.

Le Penseur, tell your mother that 40 million Koreans agree with her. Possibly more, but I'm not sure if North Korea has electricity to run their fans.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 15:40, closed)
Person dies for seemingly no reason.
There is a fan in the room.
The fan must have caused it.

It's the same thinking as:

Kid shoots up his school.
The kid owns a violent video game.
The video game must have caused it.

It's moronic.
(, Thu 3 Jul 2008, 21:55, closed)
First two fan deaths of the season!
Sorry for lack of English.
(, Fri 4 Jul 2008, 4:22, closed)

« Go Back

Pages: Latest, 21, 20, 19, 18, 17, ... 1