Teen Sets Himself on Fire for Online 'Challenge'

Fire challenge involves pouring alcohol on one's chest and lighting it

By Elizabeth Armstrong Moore,  Newser Staff

Posted Jul 30, 2014 3:33 AM CDT

(Newser) – If pouring rubbing alcohol on your chest and lighting it on fire sounds like a bad idea, you're on the right track. A 15-year-old boy in Kentucky had to learn the hard way, however, after he attempted a stunt called the "fire challenge" that's been popping up on sites like Facebook and YouTube. "I just poured alcohol on it, and lit it, and it just automatically went and burst," the teenager, who suffered second-degree burns, tells WKYT-TV.

The teen and the firefighters who responded say the videos—which also sometimes show teens spraying themselves with aerosol cans and then lighting themselves on fire, CBS Cleveland reports—don't show the aftermath once the burst of flames subsides. "Unbearable," the teen says. "Literally after it got put out it was already blistering." And, he says he realizes now, trying the stunt risks not only personal bodily harm, but serious damage to one's surroundings as well. Lexington Police say they'll be investigating and that child services have been called. (Another teen recently had a close encounter with extreme heat when her cellphone ignited under her pillow.)

An ambulance in Olympia, Wash., on Thursday, July 17, 2014.
An ambulance in Olympia, Wash., on Thursday, July 17, 2014.   (AP Photo/Rachel La Corte)
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