A cautionary tale of how taking risks for views can go horribly wrong.
Shreveport Police have confirmed that a man has suffered severe burns while he was making a TikTok video and accidentally set himself on fire. The man is still dealing with life-threatening injuries, and remains in hospital.
Shreveport Police stated that the incident took place on Sunday, January 2nd in the 2600 block of Malcolm Street.
Though it is still unclear how the man came about accidentally setting himself on fire, police have confirmed that the man is suffering from third-degree burns. An investigation is currently taking place.
This unfortunate event could have easily been avoided.
While there are details still lacking about how and why this terrible incident took place, it is clear that the victim attempted to participate in a dangerous challenge that was linked to the social media platform, TikTok.
The Shreveport Fire Department investigation indicated that a flammable liquid was used before the victim had a mishap with the fire, as is confirmed by Chief Assistant Clarence Reese to the Shreveport Times.
The fire department stated that they received a report of a person who was on fire on Malcolm Street, and found the man with burns to almost all of his body. The man was then taken to a medical center with injuries that could very well be life-threatening.
They have also stated that three people, including a child, were at the home at the time of the incident. While there are other occupants in the building during the fire, it was confirmed that no one else was injured. The source of the blaze started in the bathroom, which is reported to have shown signs of fire and smoke damage.
TikTok: entertainment platform, or encouragement tool for dangerous behavior?
As of today, the incident is still under investigation. The Shreveport Police and Fire departments have not shared any additional information.
Similar TikTok challenges to this one, likely linked to the #firechallenge, left two children with life-threatening injuries in Alaska in September 2021.
Palmer Fire and Rescue warned, after the incident with the two children, "do not do a challenge that could affect your health or that of someone else."
TikTok has developed a reputation for allowing the viral spread of challenges that could negatively impact the safety and mental health of those participating, and those around them. The dangers to come from these challenges, such as the #firechallenge, cannot be understated.
It is advised that any social media or viral challenge that could put one's health or safety at risk be avoided entirely, and that such posts be reported to social media platforms as offensive or dangerous content so that it may be taken down.