May 26, 2024

The ride of your life, er, death


“And now for something completely
different” is a Monty Python catch phrase which seems both true and inadequate
for the brainchild of a Lithuanian inventor at Imperial College London. Julijonas Urbonas
has designed a euthanasia roller coaster. The idea is to die of G-forces in the
exhilaration of experiencing the ultimate theme park ride. “Thanks to the marriage of the
advanced cross-disciplinary research in space medicine, mechanical engineering,
material technologies and, of course, gravity, the fatal journey is made
pleasing, elegant and meaningful.” Mr Urbonas says that it might be useful for
disposing of over-population or of people who are tired of life. Mr Urbonas’s feasibility study is a macabre jest, of course. But it’s interesting to see the fascination that some people have with enabling death.

Michael Cook