- Two brothers, aged nine and 11, left parents furious after joining craze
- Footage of youngsters playing the dangerous game has gone viral
- Facebook and Youtube claim to be removing the footage
- A boy reportedly died last year when he was engulfed by the flames
Ben Ellery for The Mail on Sunday
The parents of two boys who set themselves on fire as part of an online craze have pleaded for videos promoting the dangerous stunt to be taken off the internet.
Tyler O’Connor, nine, and his 11-year-old brother Shaun escaped serious injury after trying to take part in the ‘Fire Challenge’, in which flammable liquid is poured over the body and lit.
The person then has to dive into a bath or pool before the flames take hold.
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A boy sets himself on fire after dousing himself in accelerant as part of a new online craze, the Facebook ‘fire challenge’
After setting themselves alight, the person taking part in the challenge is supposed to dive into a pool or bath before the flames take hold
Footage of youngsters taking part has spread across the internet, with the videos being shared widely across Facebook and YouTube.
The boys’ parents Donna O’Connor and Anthony Mummery, from Churchdown, Gloucestershire, have now warned others about the risk after their children attempted the stunt twice during one weekend in November.
Mr Mummery, 32, said: ‘I felt sick and worried when I heard what they’d done. It could easily have been a phone call saying my sons are in hospital or they’ve died. They have been punished more than I have ever punished them before. It’s shocking that kids are able to watch videos like that.’
Footage of youngsters taking part in the challenge have spread across the internet, as kids take little to no safety precautions before setting themselves alight, often inside their homes
Parents are issuing warnings as the popularity of the craze leads to more and more youngsters taking part, often allowing their friends to set fire to the lighter fluid or petrol they have covered themselves in
When contacted by The Mail on Sunday, Facebook took down two of the videos. However, last night many more were still accessible on YouTube.
Last year, a 15-year-old American boy was reportedly burned to death after his entire body was engulfed in flames.
A London Fire Brigade spokesman said: ‘This is a stupid and dangerous craze. You’re almost certain to seriously injure yourself, and fire can easily spread to furniture and other flammable household items which is a risk to others.’
But as many of those who take part find out, the challenge is dangerous and once the youngsters are engulfed in flame it can be very difficult to put the fire out