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Dear Escape Artists: Stop Burying Yourselves Alive. You Can't Cheat Dirt

By Dustin Rowles | Miscellaneous | September 10, 2015 |

By Dustin Rowles | Miscellaneous | September 10, 2015 |

Escape artist Anthony Britton has become the latest dumbass to bury himself under dirt and attempt to escape, as he is apparently unfamiliar with the concept of gravity. Six feet of soil is heavy, man! You can’t climb your way out of that because you cannot move when you’re stuck under a ton of dirt, especially when you’re in handcuffs.

To Britton’s credit, he managed to stay alive, though he was buried for nine minutes. He did have to be administered oxygen. He also suffered a crack rib and saw visions of his dead grandfathers before passing out.


It’s not the first time the feat has been attempted. Harry Houdini also attempted it, and managed to actually climb up through the dirt enough to get his hands above the soil before his assistants dug him out. Houdini was going to attempt to escape a coffin buried in sand at another point, but he died beforehand (the casket that was meant to be used for the buried alive stunt was used as his actual coffin).

If Houdini couldn’t do it, don’t think you can either.

A man named Amazing Joe Burris also attempted it in 2001, although he added a kicker. In addition to being buried in a coffin under three feet of dirt, there was an additional layer of wet concrete, which meant he had to climb through 7 tons of weight. He didn’t get a chance, as the plastic coffin he was in was crushed. He died of asphyxia in front of a 150 people, including his own children.

Twenty-four year old Alan Allan also attempted to escape dirt in honor of Houdini. He also failed, but he was dug out before he died.

So let this be a lesson to you, folks: You can’t beat dirt. It’s heavy.

Dustin is the founder and co-owner of Pajiba. You may email him here, follow him on Twitter, or listen to his weekly TV podcast, Podjiba.