Destroyed in Seconds TV Poster Image

Destroyed in Seconds



Real people in real accidents -- and real danger.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The show makes it clear that thoughtless behavior can often have very serious, very dangerous consequences -- but just as often it shows that many dangerous accidents are nobody's fault and that sometimes people die, very suddenly, for no particular reason.


Almost every clip features some kind of major destruction, including car crashes, boat crashes, airplane crashes, and other kinds of crashes. Most of these obviously have the potential to cause serious injuries, which can be unnerving.

Not applicable

Some words are bleeped.


Some products are mentioned by name, then destroyed.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Few scenes show alcohol, but some accidents are clearly the result of people drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this reality show is all about destruction. It features clips of real car accidents, airplane crashes, and boating mishaps, as well as footage of other real things blowing up, falling down, and being destroyed in an amazing variety of ways. Sometimes the events seem just as dramatic as similar incidents from the movies or TV, sometimes they seem less exciting, and sometimes they're even more explosive -- but they're always more compelling, because they involve real people who are in real peril. There are few images of people actually being injured on screen, but the potential is always there.

Parents say

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What's the story?

The title of DESTROYED IN SECONDS really explains it all. Ron Pitts hosts this relatively intense reality show, narrating clip after clip of harrowing real-life accidents. There are car crashes, airplane crashes, boat crashes, and many, many other kinds of accidents. Watch a tornado lift an entire house off its foundation. Watch a ship plow into a bridge at full speed and burst into flames while the crew runs around the deck trying to salvage their doomed vessel. Watch a fierce windstorm literally shake a suspension bridge to pieces. And so on.

Is it any good?


Some of these accidents -- captured on amateur video, surveillance cameras, and news footage -- are just that, completely random events that couldn't be prevented or predicted. Others are the result of human error, from minor mistakes to massive blunders in judgment. As these disasters unfold, Pitts explains what's happening and what caused them, as well as noting whether the people involved survived (given the scope of these catastrophes, it's surprising how often there are no fatalities). The show sometimes runs clips again in slow motion to highlight when someone managed to jump off a boat or bail out of a plane at the last minute.

For an audience raised on the high-octane faux explosions of Hollywood blockbusters, these real blasts will look a bit different. Some seem less impressive but still quite deadly, while others look a lot like the fictional version. But knowing that real people are in real danger makes all of these clips seem more harrowing than any fictional film or TV show.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the impact of watching real-life crashes and accidents. Do these incidents seem more or less dangerous than similar ones in movies or TV shows? Do they seem more dramatic? Why or why not? Families can also discuss whether they think these dangerous accidents are truly random events or are the fault of the people involved. Do you think those people made any foolish mistakes? Does this show teach you anything about safety?

TV details

Premiere date:August 21, 2008
Cast:Ron Pitts
Network:Discovery Channel
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-14
Available on:DVD

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Kid, 11 years old July 10, 2012


Destroyed in seconds is one of my favorite shows. Though it has minor language and major violence.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much swearing
Kid, 8 years old December 28, 2010
I don't get why they rate this ages 13-15 it just can't understand it. also great show
What other families should know
Great messages
Kid, 12 years old August 4, 2010

Almost 90% have no casualties, so watching is pure amazement

The thing about Hollywood explosions is the fact they aren't real, so yo don't care. Here, it's real, and you do care. They do an excellent job of finding disasters with no casulaties, but there are just enough to keep you ont he edge of your seat. Not for the squeamish, but if you like explosions and suspense, and a little shakey cam, here you go.
What other families should know
Too much violence


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