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Science Thursday, January 9th 2014 at 5:20 pm

People Threw Boiling Water into the Air to Make Instant Snow, Several of Them Missed the Air and Hit Themselves

Stand back; we're going to try science. No, seriously, it will burn you.

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Guys, we know it’s been suuuuper cold and all, but there are less painful and, frankly, more effective ways to warm yourself up than throwing boiling water on yourself. It might look cool to throw it into the air and watch it freeze, but no matter how close our temperatures get to Mars, boiling water on your skin still just burns you.

Yes, as temperatures dropped way below zero in large parts of the US and Canada this week, a lot of people tried a neat little science experiment where throwing boiling water into super cold air freezes it instantly. Here’s an old weather channel video about how the process works:

Here’s another shot from just a few days ago of the trick working correctly:

It’s pretty amazing, and it sounds like a really fun science experiment. Just make sure you don’t, you know, throw the boiling water on yourself. Despite its propensity to turn to snow, boiling water is, in fact, very hot, which apparently needs to be said.

When it’s done incorrectly, it results in severe burns that send people to the ER, and according to the Los Angeles Times, there are reports on Twitter of at least fifty people burning themselves while trying to play Snow Miser.

We could show you a bunch of gross pictures of people who burned themselves, but we took that hit for you and trust us, there are plenty of them. If you absolutely need to see things you will be unable to un-see, you can find them on Twitter with a search for “boiling water.”

Just remember: we warned you—about both the pictures and throwing boiling water on yourself, because we live in a universe with a cruel sense of humor where extremely cold temperatures cause people to burn themselves.

(via Los Angeles Times, image via Alf Altendorf)

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