Have you ever thought about how life would actually be without the development of technology and the everyday things around us? Growth would have been stunted. However, for the development to come about, the key ingredient would be invention.

Without the inventions of things like the telephone or automobiles or radium or the computer, human beings would still be stuck in the Neolithic Age.

However, inventing is all about trial and error and in some cases, these inventors have succumbed to their own inventions.

Marie Curie – Discovery Of Radium And Polonium

Marie Curie was a Polish-French physicist who was a pioneering researcher in the field of radioactivity. Not only did she discover radium and polonium, that is, radioactivity but also contributed vastly to finding a treatment for cancer.

Marie Curie throughout her life actively promoted the use of radium to alleviate suffering, and during World War I, assisted by her daughter, Irene, she personally devoted herself to this remedial work. She retained her enthusiasm for science throughout her life.

Marie Curie

However, what brought about her death was the very thing that she had mothered – radiation. She was exposed to a lot of radiation owing to her research and died of aplastic anemia in 1934. It is a rare condition where the body stops producing red blood cells owing to the damage of bone marrow caused by excessive exposure to radiation.

Alexander Bogdanov – Immortality By Blood Transfusion

Alexander Bogdanov’s life was ended by his own invention that was supposed to grant him immortality.

Bogdanov was a Russian physician who became obsessed with finding the secret of eternal youth or at least partial rejuvenation.

 Inventors Who Were Killed By Their Own Inventions
Alexander Bogdanov

Beginning in 1924, he began experimenting with blood transfusions as the means to immortality. Bogdanov used himself as his own guinea pig. After going through eleven transfusions, he claimed that his eyesight had improved and his hair wasn’t falling as much.

However, in 1928, one of these very transfusions killed him when he had unknowingly taken blood from a student suffering from malaria and tuberculosis.


Read More: 10 Crazy Inventions That Will Make You Say “WTH”



William Nelson – Motorized Bicycles

“Killed By Own Invention” was the headline of the 1903 edition of The New York Times when William Nelson died while test-driving a motorized bicycle – the predecessor to the motorcycle.

William Nelson

The 24-year-old promising inventor was also an employee of General Electric. But while taking his motorized bike for a spin, he fell off while driving uphill and died instantly.

Jean François Pilâtre De Rozier – Hot Air Balloon

The human dream to find a way to fly took years of failed attempts and tragically the French chemist Jean François Pilâtre De Rozier, was the first person to die while trying to fly.

Jean François Pilâtre De Rozier

In 1783, he created the first hot air balloon, known as a Roziere Balloon. This hybrid balloon had separate chambers for both non-heated and heated lifting gas. But in 1785, while attempting to cross the English Channel in it, the balloon suddenly deflated and crashed from over 1500 feet killing Rozier and his companion.

Thomas Midgely Jr. – Developing Leaded Gasoline

Thomas Midgely Jr. was a highly decorated chemist who is best known for his work with “no-knock” or leaded gasoline and the greenhouse gas Freon. The gasoline of the early 20th century was of poor quality and caused engine knocking, which reduced both power and fuel efficiency and led to breakdowns. Thereby, Thomas Midgely Jr. discovered that when tetraethyl lead (TEL) is added to gasoline, it eliminates the engine knocking which is caused by a cool flame igniting the fuel too early.

Thomas Midgely Jr.

Despite the success, the secured nature of the leaded gasoline was called into question. Hence, to prove that leaded gasoline was a safe fuel, he once poured it all over his hands and sniffed from a flask of it for 60 seconds during a press conference.

Soon enough he contracted lead poisoning. In 1940, Midgely Jr. became ill with Polio and it left him disabled. He used his inventing wiles to develop an elaborate string and pulley system to help him lift out of bed. Tragically, he died of strangulation when he got entangled in those ropes of his own assistance device.

These inventors who died at the hands of their own inventions are only to name a few. However, there are more who not only have plummeted to their own deaths individually, but have also cost the lives of the ones working with them.

Disclaimer: This article is fact-checked


Image Sources: Google Images

Sources: India Times, Business Insider, The Washington Post

Find the Blogger: @Rishita51265603

This post is tagged under inventors, inventions, inventions that killed inventors, William Nelson, motorization of bicycle, Marie Curie, radium, polonium, discovery of radioactivity, Alexander Bogdanov, immortality, blood transfusion, hot air balloon, Roziere balloon, developing leaded gasoline

We do not hold any right/copyright over any of the images used. These have been taken from Google. In case of credits or removal, the owner may kindly mail us.


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