More Deadly than Weed: Vending Machines

Vending_MachinesMore Deadly than Weed: Vending Machines

By: Mat Lee

Today’s edition of More Deadly than Weed was sent to me courtesy of my girlfriend. She saw it on her Facebook feed, and thought it would be perfect for the column. Turns out, she was absolutely right. Vending machines are way more deadly than weed. Between 1978 and 1995, at least 37 people have died as a result of shaking vending machines. I smell a Darwin Award!


The original article comes to us from a website called Heal the Bay. They recently published an article titled, “Vending Machines More Hazardous than Sharks.” Sharks are also more deadly than weed, as they kill about five people per year on average. That means, according to the article, if vending machines are more deadly than sharks, they are definitely more deadly than weed.

Here’s the math real quick. On average, let’s say your chances of dying from a shark are 1 in 250 million. In comparison, your chances of dying from a vending machine are 1 in 112 million. That makes vending machines more than twice as likely to kill you as a shark, and way more deadly than weed.


I found an interesting study by Dr. Michael Q Cosio published back in 1988 in the Journal of the American Medical Association titled “Soda Pop Vending Machine Injuries.”

A quote from the abstract states, “Fifteen male patients, 15 to 24 years of age, sustained injuries after rocking soda machines. The machines fell onto the victims, resulting in a variety of injuries. Three were killed. The remaining 12 required hospitalization for their injuries. Unless changes are made to safeguard these machines, people will continue to suffer severe and possibly fatal injuries from what are largely preventable accidents.”

An article about the study on the Guardian states that some of the injuries included a fractured skull, a partial toe amputation, an evulsed nerve, a punctured bladder, and many leg bone and ligament injuries. As far as the deaths go, one man was found by his wife, and it it took four men to lift the soda machine off him. The second was found pinned to a wall with the soda machine resting on his neck, and the third died after friend could no longer hold up the machine. He was crushed.


There’s a whole bunch of interesting reading here on the myths section of about vending machine deaths. Are they really true? Or just an urban myth? Of course they are true. People can be fat sugary treat addicted pigs, and having all those tasty treats lit up right in front of them inside of a giant safe of death is just asking for trouble.

The problem with vending machines got so bad it seems even Ann Lander, back in 1998, had to address the situation. Ann wanted to make a law saying all vending machines had to be bolted to the wall. I say that’s not enough. Vending machines have zero medical value, therefore I say they should be schedule one! These things have killed more people than weed, and are never going to stop.

It’s especially amusing to me this death in particular happened on a college campus. I thought you went to college to get smarter, not to get killed by a 900 pound Coca Cola dispenser. There’s an interesting article from 2001 on the SF Gate about the nanny state we have to live in, and how there are warning labels on everything trying to protect people from their own Darwinistic stupidity.

Weed doesn’t want you to get hurt trying to eat shitty vending machine “food.” Weed wants you to get blazed and eat an amazing steak dinner, complete with garlic mash. Weed doesn’t want you climbing all over a cold metal box of death trying to figure out why it ate your $.75, inevitably pulling the whole shit down on top of you in a crushing cry of defeat and unsatisfied hunger. If anything, I would say the weed stuffs does the opposite. It would make you not really care that this thing just stole from you. Weed would keep you safe, make you turn the other cheek, and go order a pizza. I love you weed.

That’s going to do it for this session of More Deadly than Weed. Thank you so much for reading. If you have any suggestions on things that are more deadly than weed, send them in and I’ll take a look. Who knows, maybe I’ll  write up your suggestion! Be sure to share and share a like if you do the Facebook thing, and post a link on Twitter to help spread the word.

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Thanks for reading, for Stuff Stoners Like, I’m Mat Lee.

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