Steel is valuable, especially the high-grade alloy used in steel cable. Scrap metal dealers do not ask questions. They pay in cash. And a good supply of steel cable can be found in elevator shafts.
This particular gold mine was a towering shaft inside an empty granary near Zatec, forty miles northwest of Prague. The cable was tightly fastened, and the far end of it disappeared into the shadowy distance above.
After substantial wear and tear on a hacksaw, our man finally cut through the strong steel cable. At that instant the counterbalance, no longer held in check, started to move silently downward, accelerating until it reached the bottom of the shaft.
Result: one proud winner of a “terminal velocity” Darwin Award.
And Happy 200. Birthday – Charles Darwin!