back to article IT engineer fights spider with improvised flamethrower

An IT engineer who attempted to dispatch a spider with an improvised flamethrower ended up on the wrong end of his own can of deodorant, the Sun reports. Dad-of-two Chris Welding, of Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, explained: "It was about 10.30pm last night. My wife was getting ready for bed and suddenly she let out a scream. She said …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Paris Hilton


    ...he's only doing that newfangled Game Programming Engineer stuff.

  2. envmod

    the old trick eh?

    I do this all the time. Most recently to dispatch a large amount of wasps which had congregated in my kitchen one morning after the light had been left on all night. There were nine of the little bastards. Nine!

    Anyway, I burst in there with a can of my girlfriend's hair spray, a yellow Clipper and a pair of sunglasses and sent all those stripey fuckers to hell.

    Worked a treat.

    1. LinkOfHyrule

      I wouldnt encourage this

      You could do yourself some damage and be nominated for the Darwin awards. I hope you're not being for real!

      I'm not a spiders rights activist thought btw, I couldn't care a less about them.

    2. Matt Bull
      Thumb Up


      "I burst in there with a can of my girlfriend's hair spray, a yellow Clipper and a pair of sunglasses and sent all those stripey fuckers to hell"

      That, Mr envmod, should be a tagline from the next Tarantino flick. :)

    3. Anonymous Coward

      "sent all those stripey fuckers to hell"

      You sadistic anti-vespite!

      1. Chrome

        The only good bug is a dead bug

        Would you like to know more?

        1. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Paul RND*1000


      I salute your action in the service of humankind.

      The only good wasp is one that's done to a crisp, doused in chemical death or smeared very thinly between two surfaces.

    5. Anonymous Coward

      Dare to dream!

      Only thing works better is a can of starting fluid. I know, because I've had 1 1/2 eyebrows for the last 20 years.

      I chose the flame because it went with the theme of the thread.

    6. jubtastic1
      Thumb Up


      In our loft, clad head to toe in motorcycle gear, 3 wasps nests, thousands of wasps, 2 cans of Right Guard. Got bonus points for not burning down the house and not passing out from the fumes and falling through the loft hatch.

      Player 1 wins.

  3. Simon 26

    There's a...

    "P" missing from his name.

  4. groovington


    I regularly use a can of Raid and a Zippo to dispatch unwanted arachnids. Can't say I've ever suffered any blow back.

    1. Chris 244

      Raid AND a Zippo?

      "Raid kills bugs dead" would imply that the Zippo might not be entirely neccessary. Or advisable.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        To paraphrase Graham Chapman

        There's nothing more dangerous than a wounded mosquito.

        Raid & a lighter? Bravo!

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Shirley that's a made up name.

    Lucky he didn't set fire to the bathroom.

  6. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    Oh, no...

    Two burnt fingers and a burned knuckle - and a call to the emergency services? No wonder NHS is going bust.

    And, Chris, welding, ur doing it rong!

    1. Stubar

      Sorry, couldn't risk :o)

      And, Vladimir, spelling, ur doing it rong! [sic]

      1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

        Oh, am I?

  7. Cameron Colley

    Two fire crews and an ambulance?

    For a couple of small burns? Why the fuck was so much time and money wasted on some guy who had an owie?

    "In case he inhaled some fumes" is not an answer, by the way, unless they're now using a new propellant which suddenly turns into radioactive thallium. I know, and have read of, many people who have done similar (including myself, many times during my teens) with absolutely no ill effects -- so to my mind taking him in on the off chance something very very rare happened is akin to taking someone random off the street to hospital just in case they're about to have a heart attack.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Two fire crews and an ambulance?

      > "Why the fuck was so much time and money wasted on some guy who had an owie?"

      I'll bite. Someone called 999 and asked for either an ambulance or advice on what to do about a burn. The first thing the handler's going to ask is what the cause was, and when the user says something along the lines of "it was caused from a sheet of fire that came from the bathroom" before hanging up you can imagine their response. 999 has to respond to *every* call, even if it's blatantly a prank call or a waste of time. The fire engines were probably sent because it sounded serious and they needed to guarantee the Health & Safety of the ambulance staff.

      Personally, If I were the dispatcher I think i'd be making a quiet deal with the police to dispatch police officers to as many calls as humanly possible under any pretence (like them being faster responding and first aid trained, whatever) I'm sure they could make themselves useful by making arrests for "wasting police time".

      1. Cameron Colley

        @Anonymous Coward, Tuesday 31st August 2010 22:41 GMT

        You scenario does sound plausible -- but if that is what happened then:

        A) The guy is a pathetic, time-whasting, wimpy arsehole for calling 999 because his pinky was sore.

        b) I hope to fuck he had to pay for the time of the ambulance and fire crew as people do when they cause car accidents.

        I still think this is sad example of money being thrown away due to people being far too cautious. The number of people killed over the years by smoke inhalation from the burning of a few millilitres of hydrocarbons must be minuscule -- heck, some people regularly suck butane flames through paper tubes of cancerous chemicals and nobody rushes them to hospital if they burn their finger in the process.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Services havin' a field day

      Beats sitting at the station the entire boring night, no? A bit of because we can, maybe? Or is it more sinister, and are we that coddled into incompetence by our (technology|government|...)? Something for the tin hat brigade to stew over.

      Anyway, personally I leave spiders be if they keep to themselves, or grab them their thread or perhaps "utilizing" a bit of paper or cloth to catch them, then shoo them out the window. Keep'em at arm's length, for they aren't my friends but they are useful. No need to get scared about that.

      1. Alister

        sitting at the station the entire boring night

        Dunno about the fire service, but the Ambulance service are lucky if they get two half hour breaks in a twelve hour shift - and that's on nights - on days it is common not to get a break at all.

    3. Anonymous Coward

      very excessive..

      I wouldn't have even bothered calling 999 at most just NHS helpline if any advice necessary.. In my youth have had tons of incidents... dumbest of all while bbq in a cave we see a small hole which we couldn't see the end of so numties the lot of us, decide to .. "lets chuck some diesel into it and light it to see how far it goes.." 3 of us standing on top while one of us lights the match... 6 burned eyebrows later... duh... (seem to recall serious amounts of vodka also involved...). Cannot imagine hair spray being worse than this though.. bit of toothpaste on the burn and bob'd be his uncle - use sainsburys basics for 17p a tube and apply liberally.

      If they came out at all even, they probably just came to have a laugh and see a numty!!. if it's policy to go out then I want a refund on my taxes please cause that's just stupid...

  8. GrahamT

    Roger Moore...

    ... used the spraycan flamethrower on a snake. Sean Connery despatched the spider with his shoe - like a real man.

  9. Blue eyed boy
    Thumb Up

    When Flanders and Swann sang about the spider in the bath

    the ultimate weapon used against the creature was a present from Penarth. If only they were around now to hear this one and update the song.

  10. Rogerborg

    YouTube for "Man Flu"

    And all will be answered.

  11. sT0rNG b4R3 duRiD

    Save the spiders...

    They kill the other nasties...

    And seriously, you guys don't have anything there remotely venomous amongst them.

  12. Anonymous Coward

    Should have got the hoover out

    not the flamethrower!

  13. Anonymous John

    That's what I call

    A flash n the pan.

  14. npupp 1

    theres a joke in there...

    About loo and backdraft...

    I'll leave that one to the pros. Tis Pub'o'clock

  15. Daniel 1

    There, you see?

    We IT professionals DO own cans of deodorant...

    ...We still haven't worked out what they're for, yet, but we've been having a smashing time, trying to work out!

  16. Ian Ferguson
    Black Helicopters


    I'm not sure if I believe this blowback story - my guess is the spider was also equipped with a flamethrower, asbestos pants and jetpack for quick getaway.

  17. Richard Jukes


    I also cannot see why he had to go to hospital....Madness.

    Also I personally find a can of WD40 (or GT85) works a treat, one doesnt even have to light it. Instant mini oil slick for instant insect death!

  18. Malcolm 1


    Someone's been watching too much Arachnophobia :)

  19. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. hplasm

      Of course you can't inhale a vacuum-

      you'll die, son.


    frying the spider

    yes i would of done the same thin not burn myself of course i also get spiders in the bathroom the crawl throguh the plug hole or bathtub hole although i havent getten any through the loo pipe yet heh. if i do il fry the bugger lol

    1. Fluffykins Silver badge

      yes i would OF done

      I would HAVE

      Oh, all right; if you must:

      I WOULD'VE

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Brain Dead 4 Ever.

      man u reely shud ov gon to skool

  21. Mike Moyle

    Changing his name... Chris Welded...?

    ...Chris Welldone...?

  22. BitBotherer


    His wife discovered the spider. She was having a dump, started screaming, forgot to flush and along came our hero and blew himself up on her gaseous emanations.

    I would be fucking embarrassed to go to hospital with singed fingers.

  23. Craig 28

    Re:An Owie

    It doesn't say how badly his knuckles/fingers were burned. Flames are a dangerous thing, though sending the fire crews does seem a bit overkill.

  24. PershingDriver

    He forgot to say...

    ..Hey, Y'all watch this!

  25. Pemberton_


    To everyone who's wondering why there was an ambulance and two fire crews...

    "There was an almighty explosion which blew the man back into his hallway and lifted the hatch on the loft."

    I don't know why they left that out. I'd say he's lucky if it's indeed true.

  26. xj25vm

    Definitely done it wrong

    Yeah - he must have sprayed a heck of a lot of propellant in there. This stuffs tends to make a bit of a flame - but with an appropriate quantity - it is a fairly brief flame - not enough to burn anything (except some singed hair or eye brows).

    It also works a treat for setting the tyre bead on the wheel rim - brilliant stuff. And the effect is quite spectacular :-)

  27. Merchman

    I for one...

    ...welcome our flame retardant arachnid overlords.

  28. Nick Oakley

    fumes and spiders..

    I remember that news article about some kid spraying too much Lynx in a small bathroom and being overcome by the propellant fumes.

    Also, slightly apropos - I have two large spiders in my bedroom: one is the small bodied-long legged type and the other is just large and thick legged so you can actually hear it running around the floor at night.

    Last night I dreamt they both engaged in an arachnoid-duel across the bedroom floor - bizarrely conjoined one underneath the other in a crazy 16-legged beast cavorting wildly around the carpet. It was like a manic little tumbleweed pattering about and, I kid you not, they were emitting little screams as they attacked each other.

    I'm pretty sure it was just a dream, but it sure as hell woke me up !

    1. lglethal Silver badge


      You werent partaking of a few "fumes" before you went to bed last night were you by any chance?

  29. Anonymous Coward

    The important question is

    what is an IT type doing with a can of deodorant in the first place?

  30. Mark Jan

    Inhaled Fumes

    I think the daft twat meant to say "inhaled flames" and not "inhaled fumes".

    The former is potentially fatal, the latter in this case probably only harmful to the spider.

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    In my youth I once tried lighting a lighter while I was filling it up. Whoosh. Me whole head engulfed in a momentary fireball. Decided to put up with the soreness (and it was f'ing sore) rather than risk the mockery from my dad.

    Cant remember how I explained the lack of eyebrows though

  32. Anonymous Coward

    Maybe Chris...

    should have used Oxyacetylene instead ?

    well his surname is Welding !

  33. Juan Inamillion

    It's not quite Playmobil...

    but you'll get the picure...

  34. Anonymous Coward

    Some of us...

    ...drink deeply from the well of knowlegde, this geezer clearly only gargled.

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Do what I do...

    The man's an idiot. He should do what every right-thinking bloke ought to do, which is to usher the family away, shut the bathroom door, wait 10 seconds, flush the toilet ostentatiously and emerge saying "Okay, it's gone now."

    Never fails. Anon for the obvious reason.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Good grief

    What sort of spiders do you have in England that require such extreme measures? In the supposedly armaments-mad US west I've known men to deal with black widow spiders (poisonous enough to put you in the hospital) with a shoe or even a shampoo bottle.

    I look forward to hearing what this gent does the first time he finds a snake in his garden, and hope that the wife, kids, and neighbors are safely outside the blast radius.

    1. Rattus Rattus

      In Australia

      the usual response is "Just wave your hat at it, it'll go away" when dealing with redbacks and similar critters. If it's not venomous enough to kill you quickly with (nearly) no hope of survival (eg stonefish, blue-ringed octopus, irukandji) it's not worth worrying about.

    2. Eponymous Cowherd

      Mostly Harmless

      I just pick them up and chuck them out when Mrs/ Little Miss Cowherd start screaming. Never been bitten yet.

  37. asiaseen


    Is he blond, too?

    1. Geoff Campbell Silver badge


      Not any more....


  38. Balukka

    spider here.....

    i am OK!

  39. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    It was an Essex spider - the deadliest known to good taste!

    In in Melbourne (Oz) we squash first, ask questions later. Flames are to be avoided, as you want to be able verify your kill before it verifies it's kill.

    Although generally only if it's black. The brown ones are huge and would make an awful mess.

    Icon: what else?

  40. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    UPDATE: According to the Telegraph...

    ...the bathroom light was out and he tried to kill it just with the contents of the aerosol THEN lit the lighter to see if he'd hit it or not. That explains the fire engine and ambulance then. Still seems a bit odd though...using it as a flamethrower would be the obvious first choice to anyone who works in IT.

    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

      That explains things!

      Really, just shows that the term "IT engineer" is an oxymoron.

      A note for the future: Gas + Air + open flame = kaboom! (Methane at 5% to 15% concentration in air)

  41. Chris Parsons Bronze badge

    Shows how out of touch with the environment you lot are

    Spider in the bathroom? Leave it there. They do good.

    Wasp nest, leave it there, they do good.

    What a bunch of wimps.

  42. Huntsman

    What a wimp!

    He should have done what a real man would do (like me), and ran downstairs screaming for his missus to put it outside.

    It's a win-win for all parties, the spider lives to fight another day, and I don't have to go anywhere near it.

    The only time a man should burn his own knuckles is during a vigorous shuffle with said knuckles.

    Pint icon to restore my manliness quotient. And a packet of McCoys. And a Yorkie.

  43. Sceptic Tank Silver badge

    Spiders with flamethrowers

    First time I read the title I actually thought the spider was equipped with an improvised flamethrower. No further comment at this time.

  44. Daniel Wilkie

    I'll be honest

    I can just about tolerate them if they keep themselves to themselves.

    The one in our bin area outside would need a AS50 to bring it down though... But mark my words if I ever get my hands on one, he/she is getting it first.

    It's bloody huge!

  45. Nigel R Silver badge

    Try suck instead of blow

    A while back I bought a Black & Decker Dustbuster rechargeable hand held vacuum cleaner. Among its many uses I have discovered I can quickly pluck any kind of insect out of the air or off a wall/ceiling - leaving no mess!

  46. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Any news...

    If he actually got in the end or not?!

  47. Eden

    The reason for not using a flamethrower

    I imagine he didn't want to flamethrower it to death if it was behind the loo as that would inevitably melt/weaken the plastic pipes and cause considerable problems and leakage.

    So problably thinking himself very clever decided to gas it to death instead, I've done this to the occasional wasp that got into the house and refused to use any of the open windows/doors and had to be disposed off.

    Sadly this appears to have exhausted his daily intelligence quota leaving him to then check the results of his deed in an enclosed space with a naked flame.

  48. Jim 59

    Another golden Regism

    It's another golden Regism - "mitigate the effects of the fireball"

  49. yomchi86
    Thumb Up

    Lol, loving the Starship Troopers themes...

    Don't mind the little buggers unless you wake up in the middle of the night and see one of them absailing from the ceiling over your bed. Still, my venus fly trap likes spiders so let him deal with them :)

  50. BritPad

    Incy Wincy

    Incy Wincy spider climbed around the loo

    Along came the Techie and wondered what to do

    Out came the can and he spayed it all about

    Out came the lighter and an almighty shout !!!!!

    1. bsop

      Post of the Week!

      Absolutely BRILLIANT!

      Sir, I salute you!

  51. Anonymous Coward


    aerosols nowadays use namby-pamby butane and other boring hydrocarbons. In the good old days we had CFC-powered antiperspirant flame throwers that would etch glass when you lit it. I made a frosted circle on a window pane, with a small transparent bluebottle-shaped silhouette of where the fly stood.

  52. TRT Silver badge

    Aerosol deodorant?

    WTF? She wanted it dead, not given the Lynx effect. Could've gone at it with a roll-on instead. Mind you, they do have 8 arm-pits.

  53. PsychicMonkey


    Mordred was hungry.....

This topic is closed for new posts.