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Dying of Thirst?

Science brain teasers require understanding of the physical or biological world and the laws that govern it.

 

Puzzle ID:#26761
Fun:*** (2.71)
Difficulty:* (1.02)
Category:Science
Submitted By:Bware0313**
Corrected By:4demo

 

 

 



A man is walking through the Sahara desert, and is dying of thirst. His caravan was attacked by a group of brigands. He ran off, and the brigands let him live. He is desperately trying to find water, when he stumbles upon a random town. He goes up to a random man, and pleads for water. The Arab says 10 dollars. The man gladly paid him. The Arab handed him a jug that said H2O2. The man shouts, WATER! and drinks half of the bottle. He says his thanks, and walks off. After about 10 steps he falls to his knees, vomits, and dies. Why did he die?


Answer

The Arab handed him a jug of H2O2, which is two hydrogen atoms bonded to two oxygen atoms. H2O2 is very similar to H2O (water). However, the extra oxygen atom creates a different substance called hydrogen peroxide. This is the substance we use to doctor our wounds. If drunk, it would make you lose nearly all body fluids. Since the man was dehydrated, he had almost no fluids to lose, making him die 10 times quicker than if he hadn't drunk the substance.
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