Startling scene unfolds at Shibuya Scramble.

The Shibuya Scramble, the massive intersection just outside Shibuya Station, has become a must-see attraction. As the nexus of pedestrian traffic in one of Tokyo’s busiest and most fashion-conscious neighborhoods, it’s a great place for people watching and trend spotting.

However, on the night of August 24, people with their eyes on the Shibuya Scramble noticed something much more startling than avant-garde attire or a bold new shade of dyed hair, as a man attempted to set himself on fire part-way across the intersection, as seen in the latter half of the footage here.

The incident occurred shortly after 7:30 p.m. With most pedestrians completing crossing as the light changed and vehicle traffic resuming, one man stopped in the middle of the crosswalk and laid down what appeared to be a backpack of some sort. The item then burst into flames and the man lay down on top of it, in a seeming attempt to set himself on fire as well.

▼ The man, shirtless, can be seen kneeling on the ground as police officers secure the scene.

Thankfully, police and firefighters arrived on scene before the man’s body was fully engulfed in flames, though he did sustain minor burn injuries which required medical treatment. No one else suffered injuries, nor did the fire cause any significant property damage.

Investigators are waiting for the man to recover interviewing him, so at the moment it remains unknown if the fire was a suicide attempt, part of a poorly planned prank video, or set for some other reason.

If you or someone you know is in Japan and having suicidal thoughts, there are people here to help. Click here for more info.

Sources: TBS News, Hachima Kiko
Top image: Pakutaso
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