Video: Icing sugar could make your birthday cake explode

  • 06/06/2016
Video: Icing sugar could make your birthday cake explode

You might think twice about decorating a birthday cake with a dusting of icing sugar after seeing the fireball that can result.

A birthday boy in the United States got a fiery surprise when his cake exploded in his face as he blew out the candles.

The video was uploaded to LiveLeak in December but has just begun doing the rounds.

Birthday boy George's mother brings out the cake as his family sings 'Happy Birthday'. But when George goes to blow out the candles, he stirs up a cloud of icing sugar, and the cake ignites into a fireball. George is surprised but unharmed.

After the initial incident, George gingerly blows out the rest of the candles -- careful not to blow the icing sugar into the fire again.

The fireball was created by what is known as a dust explosion, the rapid combustion of fine particles.

When the particles are present in high enough concentration they can ignite when exposed to heat.

Carbon-based powdered foodstuffs including icing sugar, flour and many grains are all susceptible to combustion.