Ferdinand Puentes after his plane crashed near Hawaii.
Ferdinand Puentes after his plane crashed near Hawaii. Supplied

But first, let me take a selfie!

NOTHING will stop some people from seeking out social media likes with the perfect selfie - even a ferocious hurricane.

As millions of Americans were evacuated from the path of recent storms Irma and Harvey, many risked their lives to take photos of themselves in peril. They are not the first to smile in the face of danger.

Ferdinand Puentes didn't let a little thing like his plane crashing into the sea off the Hawaiian coast put him off snapping a selfie. The crash survivor took a picture of himself immediately after the incident in 2013, floating in the ocean in an airline life jacket.

Man in front of teetering carriages after India train crash
Man in front of teetering carriages after India train crash AP

There's the picture of a fireman who took a moment to photograph himself in front of someone's house, as it burned to the ground behind him. The picture quickly went viral.

Another image to quickly circulate and spark outrage on line was of a man pictured posing in front of the charred remains of a horror car crash for his own disaster selfie. Like many before him, Nik Halik used the dramatic Benbow Volcano on Ambrym Island, Vanutau, as the background for his selfie shot.

Selfie by the charred remains of a horror smash.
Selfie by the charred remains of a horror smash. Supplied

But unlike most, the 45-year from LA continued to snap even as it exploded into flames and lava. And an airline passenger may well have frozen in fear as his cabin began to fill with smoke. Instead, he posed for a picture.  

In a shocking snap, this man can be seen taking a selfie of himself in front of a train accident in the northern Indian state of Uttar Praesh, where overturned coaches cost passengers their lives.

While two women thought a picture of themselves in front of a flaming rubbish container in Barcelona, Spain 2014 would score them lots of likes. Jesse Fox, an associate professor in the School of Communication at The Ohio State University, led a study in 2015 about the psychology behind poorly timed selfies.

"In general, the compulsion to take a picture of yourself during an emergency is unlikely to help your situation," she told Gizmodo.

"It is possible that documenting other details in an emergency would be useful - odd noises, the visage of an attacker - but turning the camera on yourself is suggesting that you are the only - or the most important - detail in this situation."

And making themselves part of the picture, rather than focusing only on the situation, indicates narcissism, Fox said.  

Girls pose in front of flames at May Day protests in Barcelona.
Girls pose in front of flames at May Day protests in Barcelona. Supplied

"People may be thinking ahead that their photos may be widely shared, and thus want to embed themselves as part of the action.  

"Alternatively, they may be trying to prove that they were actually there."  

This story originally appeared on The Sun and is reproduced here with permission.

Originally published as But first, let me take a selfie

News Corp Australia


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