BEWARE OF Killing Fruits
Coconuts can cause death, typically as a result of the fruit falling from trees and striking people on the head. Following a 1984 study on “Injuries Due to Falling Coconuts,” exaggerated claims spread concerning the numbers of deaths by coconut. A few people a year have become a widely circulated urban legend. The legend gained momentum after a noted expert on shark attacks claimed in 2002 that falling coconuts kill 150 people worldwide each year.The claim has often been compared with the number of shark-caused deaths per year, which is approximately five.
In 2002, officials in Queensland, Australia, removed coconut trees from local beaches to guard against death by coconut, leading one newspaper to dub coconuts “the killer fruit.” Historical reports of actual death by coconut date back at least to the 1770s. Published accounts also include instances of coconuts being used as weapons, including the use of “coconut bombs” by Japanese forces during World War II.