A woman remains in critical condition at a German hospital after her body became engulfed by flames while sitting on a park bench.
This latest case of suspected spontaneous combustion took place in the city of Flensburg, next to a children’s playground.
Passersby told local media that she did not make a sound as the flames took hold of her, before one man fought to extinguish them by beating her with his jacket.
The woman from Mauritius, believed to be in her 40s, has been flown to a specialist burns unit in Lubeck to receive further treatment, but the cause of the flames is as yet unknown.
The facts surrounding spontaneous human combustion remain widely disputed, many argue that owing to the body’s high water content, it is not possible to burn from the inside out.
But those who believe in the possibility have presented arguments such as obesity, electricity, divine intervention, and the most commonly supported; alcoholism.
In 2011, an Irish coroner cited spontaneous human combustion as causing the death of 76-year-old Michael Faherty.
According to the BBC the damage caused by flames in Faherty’s death were confined to his body, the ceiling directly above, and the floor directly below him. A source of ignition was never found.
Another ‘survivor’ case comes from America in 1974. Jack Angel allegedes that he awoke in his motorhome severely burned on his hand and torso. A doctor supposedly told him the fire came from within.
Hopefully the severely burned woman will make a recovery and be able to tell the world what she believes happened to her, the debate could certainly do with some solid evidence.