20 People Share The Worst Case Of Complete Incompetence They've Ever Witnessed.

We've all had our moments, the ones where we baffle ourselves with how badly we handled something, but it's so much worse when someone else actually witnesses it.

Here are twenty of the worst displays of incompetence people have seen.

Many thanks to the Reddit user who posed this question.

1/20. We were running out of stock space at work. So the company spent $3 million to renovate the stockroom and by the end we lost stock space.


2/20. There was a guy who was famous among electricians for his stupidity. The best by far was when a foreman asked him to "Clean out that trailer and burn everything."

He cleaned it out then burned down the trailer.


3/20. I was at a restaurant. The young waiter was clearing dishes.

He dropped all the dishes right by the table. Like he didn't even make it a few feet.

Starts stacking them up again, is super embarrassed. And then he drops them again. His superior comes over and sends him back into the kitchen and clears all the dishes.


4/20. Had one of my chefs chopping and blanching chips/fries, a job usually left for whatever commis was on shift but we were short that day so I got him on it.

He had a large container full of water and after he had chopped would dump the fries in there to soak the starch out. Usually you would drain them and then fry. Well he just walks straight over to the fryer and dumps the whole thing in, water included...

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I'm in shock at this point but run over and drag him away and then lunge for the emergency electricity cut off switch, hit that then move away.

The oil fizzes for a few seconds and then just erupts and fills the kitchen will gallons and gallons of oil.

One of the stupidest things I've ever seen happen in a kitchen.


5/20. I was at a Subway and the person in front of me asked for a BLT. The employee just stared blankly until the customer said, "bacon, lettuce and tomato."

The girl then grabbed some bacon and put it on the bread, but then just stared blankly again until the customer said, "Lettuce."

After putting lettuce on the bread, the customer got a blank stare until saying, "Tomato."

To this day, it's the dumbest employee I've ever seen.


6/20. Probably Slingshot Tim, a guy I used to work with, who managed to slingshot himself into an office table during a meeting.

Tim was the definition of an unnecessary hire. His dad was one of our most important suppliers at the time, so the boss was forced to hire him for a job he basically couldn't do, but also couldn't ever really be fired for. It was the moron's sweet spot.

During one meeting with Tim, I saw him lean really far back in his chair during a meeting. Far enough back that the chair started to creak loudly.

So far so standard, but Tim had done this maneuver without turning the little knob thing under the chair to give himself a little slack, so he had to push really hard against the base of the table to stay in his 'casual' position. It looked like a surprising amount of effort; Tim was visibly sweating to stay 'cool'.

Eventually, Tim couldn't take it anymore, and ended up slipping about two thirds of the way into the meeting. Thanks to physics the lack of tension shot his chair forward, throwing him into the conference table. He took the entire desk to the chest, shaking the projector enough to unplug it from the wall and spilling more than a few cups of coffee...

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It was the most hilariously loud and stupid thing I've ever seen in a meeting. Even people walking by the conference room completely stopped to witness this grown man turn himself into a human catapult.

He picked himself up off the floor in a daze, then started hurriedly packing up his stuff amidst uproarious laughter and ran out of the room. I'm not sure if Tim still works there, but I'm definitely sure the legend of Slingshot Tim endures to this day.


7/20. There was a woman who survived a car crash, but was left for days in the car with her dead family because the police didn't come to check it out. She died in the hospital.


8/20. A group of students at my workplace who did not realise, until they were taking a formal English exam, that their teacher had been teaching them the wrong book for six months.


9/20. The Hungarian government trying to tax the internet. It was going to be a fixed rate per gigabyte. It was bafflingly stupid really.


10/20. I was assistant to a VP at a bank. One of my duties was to make him look good each Monday morning for the meeting. I would print out his homework from the past week and keep it all tidy so he could just rattle it off.

One Monday, he literally said, "Don't say this part" from my notes... wow, dude, I couldn't have made it too much easier.


11/20. I was doing contract work in Miami for a drug company making a product containing nitroglycerin.

They had a chemist, Ph.D, who I thought did some odd things, but one fine day we had a meeting across town with him in it. It was a planned meeting. The subject material was known to all days before it...

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During this meeting, the good doctor gets up to make some point. This prompted him to start drawing a stick figure of nitroglycerin on the whiteboard.

He drew three carbons. So far, so good...

And then another, and finally a fifth.

I looked at my boss (I'm an R&D engineer, physicist by degree) and he saw it too.

Nitroglycerin doesn't have 5 carbon atoms in it. It has 3.

While this might be a little nit picky, this guy was the chemist for this plant, with Ph.D, and nitroglycerin delivery was the entire point of the product.

I checked everything I saw from him after that lest it become my mistake.


12/20. We have this chemical we have to inject in our process to make sure solids don't come out of the liquid. We have been warning this particular customer for months that the level of this chemical was low and dropping, and they better add some stat.

Instead they decide to use the Kramer approach and push it to the last drop. Now they have solids in all their tanks and pumps, causing them to have to shut down and clean out every piece of equipment manually, and losing production for about a week - that's a couple of million bucks down the drain, good jobs guys!


13/20. I was getting my drivers license renewed in Chicago. I needed to get a vision check. I put my eyes up to the machine. The clerk said "please read the (couldn't hear what number she said) line". I asked "could you repeat that?" Her response: stamped my paperwork and said "go pay the clerk."


14/20. We have a coolant circuit that uses distilled water. Occasionally the tank is a little low and needs to be topped off. We tell a guy to refill it. Later we come back and we see empty oil jugs next to the tank. Noooo he didn't...there's no way... Sure enough there is now a ton of oil in our water system.


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15/20. Well a few years ago I switched back to cable from AT&T Uverse and the contractor Bright House sent to our house did...

Landlord wasn't happy. Called BH, they didn't really have much to say. Posted that pic to their facebook. Supervisor was at our house the next day baffled as to why he would have done that and patched the hole.


16/20. We (in Australia) recently had a national census - Government spent millions setting a up a website encouraging people to use it. Only it couldn't handle more than a million queries an hour and so crashed just after dinner time - roughly 7pm (when not surprisingly more than a million people just happened to log in) on Census night. They're now running ads to assure people they are competent enough to store all the private data gathered.


17/20. For my job, I work with a lot of files and storing them.

This one lady didn't quite get how that was done. So, she put a bunch of files in a box, and then wrote down the identifying number for each of those files on a piece of paper.

So then I get to the office, and I'm handed a stack of 20 boxes, and a stack of 20 sheets of paper. With no way of telling which box corresponded to which piece of paper.

We store thousands of boxes of files. No amount of explaining could get this woman to understand that we don't go dig through every one of those boxes every time someone needs a file back.


18/20. I work in construction. Incompetence is a daily occurrence. In no particular order:

- Crane operator over compensated and slammed the 35-ton air handler he was placing on the roof into the wall of the hospital.

- Medical Gas Certification company didn't check all the outlets on a line, just the last one. Well he screwed up and read the gauges wrong. Passed the system and it went into operation. Two weeks later, a patient is brought in to the ER and requires oxygen. So they hook him up to the oxygen wall outlet. Only problem is that during construction, some dumb person got the lines crossed and the oxygen outlet was actually connected to the vacuum line. Patient was fine....after some well deserved freaking out.

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- All shaft walls are 2-hr rated, UL listed enclosures for fire safety and this is STRICTLY enforced and doubly so in hospitals. Well some hospital maintenance guy decided that the exhaust fan the hospital was putting in on the sly needed to have the ductwork go up this shaft. So he punch a 4'x4' hole in it and ran some ductwork through it. Never sealed the hole, no fire/smoke dampers, no nothing. We found it during demo when we renovated the area.

- During an inspection, there was a problem with the way the sprinkler heads were installed. Nothing major, just needed to tighten some uplifts restraints. Well you need to be licensed to work on that stuff. So, the idiot plumber decides "Hey, I've got a wrench and can tighten stuff", so he climbs on the ladder and starts going to town in front of the inspector. Came very close to failing the inspection.

- Everyone is complaining that there is no hot water to half the hospital and starts blaming my design. Ok, let me look. Well idiot plumber put all of the check valves in backwards so no hot water was allowed out of the system.

- Found a fire/smoke damper propped open with a 2x4.

- Previous contractor did not reconnect the storm pipes under the slab before re-pouring the concrete. Everytime it rained, water would bubble up through the floor tiles and flood the EKG lab. Hospital didn't investigate until a patient slipped. They had just been sending a dude with a mop to clean the floor.

- An electrical ground wire zip-tied to a 1" oxygen line.

- 2" main hospital oxygen line installed above the main kitchen hood.

- Maintenance removed all the supply diffusers from the main hallway that had a west facing wall, a 60 foot long wall of glass and no shade because "they didn't see the need for it during the last renovation". Well then don't complain to me when the insulation on the chilled water piping is soaked like a sponge and you have a nice brown line on your ceiling tiles showing the pipe path, and the room is hotter than Satan's armpit.


19/20. Went to a bagel place on a mildly busy Sunday morning. Ordered a bagel. Cashier looked at me wide-eyed, said nothing, went to her manager. Manager comes over, tells me it will be a good 40 minute wait.


20/20. Watched someone try to swipe a library card to try and get into a University building instead of his Uni card for about 5 minutes. He looked quizzically at the card and everything, and yes the two cards are completely different. The shock was so strong it took me a while before I corrected him.



Whoops. That snip was just a hair too far....

Your first bad haircut probably made you want to die a little when you looked in the mirror. Imagine how the person cutting your hair must have felt. Although, maybe they didn't care at all, as evidenced by the bs excuse they gave you when you finished in the barber chair.

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