The spookiest natural disaster you never heard of

Lake Nyos

Oh, look at the pretty lake. Too bad it’s a DEATHTRAP.

On 21 August 1986, an invisible, odorless cloud of death came out of Lake Nyos, in the Northwest Region of Cameroon. The nearby village of Nyos was completely wiped out, with only six survivors out of a population of 800. People as far away as 25 kilometers were killed. Some died because they heard a noise, stepped outside to see what it was, and dropped at their doorsteps. Others died because they were napping, while their awake and upright family members in the same room were unaffected. The final death toll included 1,746 people and over 3,500 livestock. It was utter devastation.

Curious? Read about it in Atlas Obscura, and maybe next time think twice about that silly folk tale you dismissed…

(photo by Bernard Cannet of Magma Production)

Advertisements

About Fletcher DeLancey

Socialist heathen and Mac-using author of the Chronicles of Alsea, who enjoys pondering science, politics, well-honed satire (though sarcastic humor can work, too) and all things geeky.
This entry was posted in event, history, science. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The spookiest natural disaster you never heard of

  1. Alma says:

    Oooh, yes, I heard about that one while studying geology! Probably during the Volcanoes course. Fascinating stuff! Scary, fascinating stuff.

  2. Lisa Shaw says:

    Hmm. File under “Damn, Nature, you scary!”

  3. Inge says:

    Oh yes.. i have read about this in a book about forgotten disasters. This was one of the scary ones. It’s amazing what nature can create and destroy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s