Cell phone toilet

How far would you go to save your cell phone?

In something out of a bizarre nightmare that the parent of a three-year-old learning to potty train might have, a Chinese woman who dropped her phone into a cesspool lost not only an electronic gadget, but her husband and mother-in-law as well. More details on this tragedy after the jump.

We’re picking up this story fashionably late, but we wanted to share it with you all the same. As reported by the Huffington Post, which in turn based their facts on an article by the South China Morning Post, a Hong Kong based English-language newspaper, two people died and several others were injured after they jumped into a cesspool to recover a cell phone. 

During the last week of May, a woman in Xinxiang City in Henan Province, China dropped her new cell phone which was worth about 2,000 yuan (US$323) into an open-pit toilet that was filled knee-deep with human excrement. Perhaps she was checking her Weibo account or perhaps it just slipped out of her pocket, but either way, it vanished into the cesspool, marking the start of a senseless tragedy.

The distraught woman’s valiant husband tried to placate her by jumping in to search for it, and in turn was shortly followed by his own mother. The woman herself also jumped in, however, all three were soon overcome by the fumes and lost consciousness.

The woman’s father-in-law enlisted the help of neighbors, some of whom also fainted or were injured in their attempt to assist with the operation. Eventually they managed to pull six people out of the cesspool with a rope.

The disastrous chain of events turned from horror into tragedy when the ambulance took over an hour to arrive at the scene, and consequently the husband and his mother both passed away at the hospital. A doctor stated that the cause of their death was asphyxiation.

The whole tragedy was compounded by the fact that the couple have a one-year-old son, who will now grow up without knowing his father or grandmother. Let this be a reminder that we should all remember the irreplaceable things in life, and not take unnecessary risks that value material objects over the lives of real people.

Sources: Huffington Post, South China Morning Post
Top Image: Angie’s List