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Man electrocuted while peeing on subway

A man was electrocuted and killed while urinating on a subway track in a Chicago suburb.

Zachary McKee (27) died after coming into contact with an electrified third rail while relieving himself at a subway stop in Evanston, Illinois, last night.

According to local police McKee clambered down onto the track at South Boulevard station and fell onto the rails at around 11 pm.

A companion alerted subway security but were too late to save him.

He was pronounced dead less than an hour later.

It is not clear whether McKee urinated directly onto the third rail but, contrary to popular belief, the practice is unlikely to result in death.

A victim would have to be standing extremely close to the electric rail in order for their stream to hold together and carry the charge. More often the stream breaks into droplets, interrupting the charge.

Many of the deaths reported to have been caused by people peeing onto electric tracks were actually the result of stepping or falling onto the rail.

In the American TV show Mythbusters a presenter urinated onto an electric fence to prove that there was virtually no danger of electrocution.

It is not clear whether McKee was intoxicated at the time.

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