4 Dead After Breaking Their Necks Trying Viral TikTok Challenge
A TikTok challenge has killed at least four people in the US
The challenge is called boat jump, where, as the name suggests, people jump off of moving boats.
People have been posting videos on the platform with the hashtag #boatjumping, motivating others to imitate the act. It has led to the deaths of four people in Central Alabama over the past four months.
According to a report by WVTM-TV, an NBC affiliate in Birmingham, Alabama, the victims include people of all ages and the dangerous TikTok challenge has rescue crews worried about people on the water.
"The four that we responded to when they jumped out of the boat, they literally broke their neck and, you know, basically [suffered] an instant death," said Captain Jim Dennis of the Childersburg Rescue Squad.
Searching for hashtags such as #boatjump and its other combinations on TikTok shows people leaping off of boats into the water
The boat is in motion in most cases, while in some cases, it's stationary.
Some of the videos where the boat is moving at a rather rapid speed have since been removed by TikTok, while others that are still up on the platform now carry a warning label advising against trying the dangerous challenge.
In one of the incidents, one reported victim was a father who had dived into the Coosa River as his wife and kids watched on
His wife was filming him as he launched himself off the back of the boat.
"Unfortunately, she recorded his death," claimed a rescue worker.
The authorities are now advising others to avoid the challenge
The challenge is also popping up on other social media platforms such as Instagram.
"I think people, if they're being filmed on camera, I think they're more likely to do something stupid because they want to show off in front of their friends for social media," Dennis told ABC7.
Expressing his frustration at the needless loss of life, especially when rescue crews work hard to save them, Dennis urged people not to take part in the challenge and advised people to prevent their family and friends from boat jumping.