A California radio station's light-hearted competition to win a Wii gaming console ended in tragedy on Friday with the death of one participant.

28-year-old Jennifer Strange entered KDND-FM's 'Hold Your Wee for a Wii' event in the hopes of winning a Nintendo console for her children, according to the Metro newspaper. Contestants were given half-pint bottles of water to drink every 15 minutes to see who could last the longest without urinating. Some time afterwards Ms Strange asked to go home from work, complaining of a severe headache. Later that day her body was found at her home by her mother.

Assistant Sacramento county coroner Ed Smith said preliminary investigations suggested the cause of death was water intoxication, a condition that occurs when the body's sodium level falls below normal and the brain swells against the skull.

Participants in the radio competition were advised not to endanger their health. "They told us if you don't feel like you can do this, don't put your health at risk," one of the other contestants said.

[Via The LA Times]

Update: a spokesman for the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department has announced that an investigation will be held into Ms Strange's death, Reuters reports. It has emerged that DJs joked on air about water intoxication and a case several years previously in which a student died from the condition under similar circumstances.

10 staff have been fired at KDND as a result of the incident.