eli5 How does an explosion or bomb take off your limbs?

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eli5 How does an explosion or bomb take off your limbs?

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They can apply enough force to your arm that it rips off before your body catches up to it.

Same as how if you’re slow and careful you can drag a roll of toilet paper by a single sheet, but pull it fast and the single sheet tears off.

An explosion is a massive release of energy. This energy pushes the air away at extreme speeds. The mass of air moving that fast is destructive, and can tear away limbs, destroy buildings, and can cause other damage.

Both answers a right concerning the pressure wave, but also many explosives create lots of shrapnel (either as apart of the bomb itself or from surrounding debris) which can also contribute to severed limbs

It isn’t like they blow clean off at the joint (like pulling off a doll arm). They destroy so much tissue in different ways (bone, muscle, blood vessels/arteries, and tendons/ligaments all behave differently under different forces) that amputation of whats left become necessary due to damage. Where amputation occurs is highly dependent on the kind of damage, proximity to a joint, and future considerations for prosthetics. Surgeons don’t want to amputate more than necessary. If someone *were* in an explosion that blows a limb clean off…well they’re probably not gonna survive the percussive forces let alone the massive blood loss so amputation is irrelevant.