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Surge in Obesity Sparks Crematorium Blazes
DER SPIEGEL ^ | April 13, 2012 | Ulf Hanke

Posted on 04/13/2012 8:33:50 PM PDT by Free ThinkerNY

The crematorium employee in the western German town of Hamelin took a last look at the coffin before pushing it inside the furnace. This was the third coffin he had processed on the morning of January 13, and the body itself weighed over 200 kilograms (440 pounds). Of that, only two kilograms of ashes were supposed to remain after cremation. But, 15 minutes later, flames shot out of the crematorium's 10-meter-high (33-foot-high) stainless-steel chimney, and parts of it began to melt.

Unable to bring the fire under control, the employee called the fire department. Firemen determined that the smoking chimney was glowing at 600 degrees Celsius (1,100 degrees Fahrenheit). They cooled it from the side and used an infrared camera to track the spread of heat through the building. It took four hours to reduce the body in the furnace to ash.

Cremations in Germany are becoming more complicated owing to an increase in obesity. At the moment, around half of the country's deceased are cremated. Likewise, roughly 15 percent of Germans are obese, and the figures are climbing.

The funeral industry has adapted to these new conditions with plus-size coffins and crematorium furnaces outfitted with larger doors. But one problem remains: Due to their high fat content, obese bodies often burn so hot that they overtax crematorium facilities. The cause of the chimney fire in Hamelin appears to have been "extreme heat due to burning a high amount of fat," according to Carl Schmidt, the crematorium's manager.

(Excerpt) Read more at spiegel.de ...


TOPICS: Miscellaneous
KEYWORDS: cremation; obesity

1 posted on 04/13/2012 8:33:54 PM PDT by Free ThinkerNY
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To: Free ThinkerNY

No article references to AGW. Remarkable! Such restraint!


2 posted on 04/13/2012 8:41:51 PM PDT by clearcarbon
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To: Free ThinkerNY

The funeral of King Henry VII at Westminster Abbey was marred by his obese corpse splitting open inside his coffin and, well you can guess how that went down.


3 posted on 04/13/2012 8:48:33 PM PDT by AU72
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To: AU72

King Henry VIII I meant. When he passed on his reward was not 72 virgins but 6 angry wives.


4 posted on 04/13/2012 8:50:32 PM PDT by AU72
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To: Free ThinkerNY
We have the same problem at a local crematorium. We often get calls about smoke in the area when they cremate a large person. I am surprised that the air pollution control agency doesn't get after them. It seems like a lot of the obese are burned after dark probably to avoid added scrutiny. Most people do not recognize what the stench is actually coming from or there would probably be even more complaints.
5 posted on 04/13/2012 8:51:25 PM PDT by fireman15 (Check your facts before making ignorant statements.)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

if anybody knowa anything about crematoriums it would be the germans given their experience.


6 posted on 04/13/2012 8:51:45 PM PDT by bravo whiskey (If the little things really bother you, maybe it's because the big things are going well.)
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To: Free ThinkerNY
In France, for example, several crematoriums refused to accept the body of a 140-kilogram woman. The woman's daughter then wrote to the newspaper Le Parisien complaining of post-mortem discrimination against her mother.

Post-mortem discrimination?

If this catches on, we will see the Democrats complaining of post-mortem disenfranchisement.

7 posted on 04/13/2012 8:55:21 PM PDT by Jagdgewehr (It will take blood)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

I have an interesting idea! How about liposuction on the dead?


8 posted on 04/13/2012 9:02:22 PM PDT by Dogbert41 ("...or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. " -Jesus)
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To: Dogbert41

or maybe wood-chippers?


9 posted on 04/13/2012 9:05:29 PM PDT by bigbob
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To: bravo whiskey

Yeah, but those were emaciated Jews, Gypsies, political prisoners and homosexuals with a very low body fat ratio.
I weigh about 360 lbs, so I’d probably cause a merry blaze, if I elected cremation.


10 posted on 04/13/2012 9:08:55 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (Ich habe keinen Konig aber Gott)
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To: Free ThinkerNY
Fat has 8 calories per gram. 454 grams per pound. Pretty good fuel. They should adapt crematoria to thermal energy generating power plants. Better than windmills.
11 posted on 04/13/2012 9:11:34 PM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: hinckley buzzard

Like Soylent Green Energy is People?


12 posted on 04/13/2012 9:17:57 PM PDT by libertarian27 (Check my profile page for the FReeper Online Cookbook 2011)
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To: AU72

Actually five angry wives- he left a widow behind.


13 posted on 04/13/2012 9:21:57 PM PDT by Squawk 8888 (Tories in- now the REAL work begins!)
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To: clearcarbon

I thought only Americans were fat, and certainly not our fabled friends in the EU????


14 posted on 04/13/2012 9:23:20 PM PDT by Chickensoup (In the 20th century 200 million people were killed by their own governments.)
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To: bravo whiskey

I know, Germans and creamatoriums. Not a good combination.


15 posted on 04/13/2012 9:25:54 PM PDT by Chickensoup (In the 20th century 200 million people were killed by their own governments.)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

True story:

A number of years ago in the California desert, a desert rat called the local sheriff and claimed that a local facility was burning bodies. The sheriff pulled the business license and said that the facility was for “firing pottery” not burning bodies — to which the desert resident said “I was at Auschwitz!! I know what burning bodies smell like!!

Turns out the building WAS being used by an LA crematorium for its excess business — they figured the desert is so sparse no one would “smell” a thing.


16 posted on 04/13/2012 9:25:58 PM PDT by Bon of Babble (The Road to Ruin is Always Kept in Good Repair)
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To: Jagdgewehr
If this catches on, we will see the Democrats complaining of post-mortem disenfranchisement.

Someone try telling a democRAT cremated people can't vote, and they'll ban cremations.

17 posted on 04/13/2012 9:33:25 PM PDT by OrioleFan (Republicans believe every day is July 4th, Democrats believe every day is April 15th.)
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To: AU72

EWWWWWWWWWWWW!


18 posted on 04/13/2012 10:13:44 PM PDT by POWERSBOOTHEFAN (No good deed goes unpunished!)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

Perhaps the crematoria should check with the Krupp steel corp to update the furance to handle higher capacity cremations.


19 posted on 04/13/2012 10:24:25 PM PDT by Doc91678 (Doc91678)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

MOST holocaust victims were emaciated, but not so those who went to Treblinka. There, the poor people were killed immediately after arrival and “processing”, e.g., having their hair shorn (if female) and their gold teeth pulled out. Sorry to be so gross, but the German camp administrators (!) figured out how to stack the fatter corpses on the pyres so as to reduce the need for petrol/gas.


20 posted on 04/13/2012 10:30:55 PM PDT by Amberdawn
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To: Free ThinkerNY
I'm thinking alternate fuel source. What could be a better way to heat up your soylent green ration?
21 posted on 04/13/2012 10:31:36 PM PDT by Joe 6-pack (Que me amat, amet et canem meum)
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To: Bon of Babble
Considering the amount of meth cooking out in the desert where they hope no one can smell it, this does not shock me.

Desert dwellers are a different breed. You do not just drive up to a remote trailer.

22 posted on 04/13/2012 10:35:27 PM PDT by doorgunner69
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To: Free ThinkerNY

Nope, the cause of the chimney fire is the same as the cause for any chimney fire. The idiots running the place didn’t clean the chimney between burnings. I would like to know how many bodies they have burned between cleanings of the chimney, I would bet it is substantial. While fat people might contribute to a dirty chimney more than thin ones, it doesn’t excuse the laziness on the part of the crematory people.


23 posted on 04/13/2012 10:44:51 PM PDT by calex59
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To: Free ThinkerNY

They could render these people into petrol.


24 posted on 04/13/2012 11:07:17 PM PDT by lurk
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To: Free ThinkerNY

My family has always (odd, I know) used funeral homes for such things.

A few years ago, one of my customers rented a shop that was just across the street from a “crematorium”...it was in what can only be described as a light commercial area. Anyway, prior to that, I had no idea that you could take a body from the hospital or hospice and just load it into the back seat of the car. That happened all the time over there...the old Ford Taurus would pull up, and they would unload “Grandma” onto a gurney in the parking lot.

Then there’s my in-laws. One of them didn’t want to pay for transport of a body (this one was at least embalmed in a coffin) from Arkansas to Iowa. So they loaded her up into the back of the pickup and drove up the Interstate...no covering over the back or anything. No report on “accidents caused”...LOL!


25 posted on 04/13/2012 11:35:44 PM PDT by garandgal
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To: Free ThinkerNY

Grease fires are always the hardest to control.


26 posted on 04/13/2012 11:43:05 PM PDT by WKUHilltopper (And yet...we continue to tolerate this crap...)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

LOL. Just how many 440 lb people are out there?


27 posted on 04/14/2012 12:43:18 AM PDT by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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To: Free ThinkerNY
Crematoria, obesity, fires ... so far, so good. Fat oxidation is exothermic.

But then the unsuspecting Freeper clicks the link, and sees that the source is ... Der Spiegel!

I am reminded of that old joke about the Lufthansa 747 awaiting takeoff at JFK. There was a question about whether passenger Goldstein had made the flight. The captain replied he didn't know. The tower asked if they'd checked the ovens. The captain shut down the engines and demanded a written apology be delivered to the airplane before he'd move.

28 posted on 04/14/2012 1:04:01 AM PDT by cynwoody
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To: freekitty

More than you might think. We have some friends that are a doctor and a nurse, and they tell plenty of stories of the morbidly obese at hospitals. Hospitals now have all sorts of special gear for handling them. Things like extra-strength beds, even little boom cranes for moving and shifting them around.


29 posted on 04/14/2012 2:58:03 AM PDT by FreedomPoster (Islam delenda est)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

Signs of the times. Necessity is the mother of inventions.

When my mother died last year she was overweight and they charged extra for that.

If I die my request is that they just go and rent a mortar mixer, a bag of powdered aluminum and another of iron oxide.

Mix up some thermite. get a fire hot enough and you won’t have much left.


30 posted on 04/14/2012 3:39:16 AM PDT by Eye of Unk (Liberals need not reply.)
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To: Free ThinkerNY

“Ich bin ein Berliner!”


31 posted on 04/14/2012 3:53:48 AM PDT by outofsalt ("If History teaches us anything it's that history rarely teaches us anything")
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To: FreedomPoster

I am surprised.


32 posted on 04/14/2012 12:10:42 PM PDT by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote; then find me a real conservative to vote for)
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