A viral video shows a Danish man inadvertently set on fire after a celebration based around a national milestone tradition went wrong.
In Danish tradition, unmarried men and women are covered in spices when they turn 25. The ritual originated in the 16th century, when spice salesmen worked so much that they didn't have time to court potential mates. If a man turns 25 and remains unmarried, he becomes known as a Pebersvend, or "pepper-dude." An unmarried woman is called a Pebermo, or "pepper-maiden."
The lighthearted tradition is meant to celebrate the birthday person's new status as a pepper dude or maiden. But this Dane's celebration was cut short when he was accidentally set on fire.
In the now-viral video posted to the video sharing site LiveLeak, the unnamed man stands calmly with his hands behind his back wearing a dust mask. His friends splash his body with water and then throw the spice.
Suddenly, he is completely engulfed in flames and falls to the floor in pain. His friends rush over to his aid and the video ends soon after.
The original poster of the video, whose relation to the victim is unknown, wrote that the man managed to escape with only minor burns on his legs.
"Because he had a dust mask on and his friends poured water on him first, he was mostly unharmed, he only suffered from minor burns on his legs," read the caption of the video.
"Normally you just cover the victim in cinnamon, it’s not part of the tradition to accidentally light your friend on fire."
Many commentators made lighthearted jokes about the situation.
"FLAME ON!!!," one person wrote. "This dude is just covering up the fact he is the human torch."
"Happy Birthday from the staff at the burn unit!" said another.
It's believed that the dust clouds around the man ignited when his friend set off a party popper in celebration.
Dust clouds are considered to be explosive, according to the Canadian Center for Occupational Health and Safety. When dust particles are the right size and concentration, they can ignite if the dust cloud is confined to a small area.
The subsequent explosions happen extremely quickly and often can have disastrous results.
"In a dust explosion, the deflagration processes happens so rapidly that the heated air and gaseous fire products (such as carbon dioxide) produce extreme air pressure that can blow out walls and destroy structures," according to the CCOHS.
Sources: Daily Mail, Live Leak, Canadian Center for Occupational Health and Safety / Photo Credit: The Delicious Life/Flickr, Viral Hog via Daily Mail