Something frightful just occured. I was in the driveway, saying goodbye to my parents, who are leaving for a week, when suddenly, the beauty bark in the rose garden started to smoke. There was no open flame, but it was without a doubt, spontaneous combustion.

Nobody was near the spot, and the only source of fire,a lit cigarette, was 15 yards away. And since it's only about 80F outside, there is no good explaination.

Mother sprinkled some water on the spot, everyone laughed, and they went on their merry way; leaving me, home alone, surrounded by several potentially flamable gardens.

It may just be paranoia brought on by stress and a lack of sleep, but I find something very ominous about this.


somebody help me.

On a much less pseudoscientific note, spontaneous combustion is a truly verified, non-controversial thing that happens to inanimate objects. Spontaneous combustion occurs when there is a combination of flammable material, an exothermic chemical reaction (such as oxidation or fermentation), and inadequate venting of heat. This has been known to happen to piles of leaves, lumber, hay, oily rags, and even powder-free latex gloves1.

Spontaneous combustion of hay is especially notable. Such combustion is actually encouraged by moisture. Moist hay set in the sun will heat rapidly and eventually ignite. The combustion will release hydrogen cyanide gas, which is extremely toxic, if the hay has been treated with preservatives.2


(1) See http://www.fda.gov/cdrh/glovepha.html

(2) Information from http://www.gov.on.ca/OMAFRA/english/livestock/dairy/facts/hayfires.htm .

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