A viral challenge on the “Tik Tok” social media app has Florida parents and law enforcement officials concerned about their children’s safety, as well as what could be a fire hazard.
“Basically what they are doing is making a connection with the outlet but dropping in a coin to make a spark,” says Major Brad Smith at the Bradford County Sheriff’s Office.
One of the videos circulating on the app shows the “outlet challenge” taking place. It involves partially inserting the brick portion of a mobile device charger into a wall outlet and then sliding a penny down onto the brick’s exposed metal prongs. The result is a blast of electrical sparks.
“That spark could actually cause a fire, and it could be internal to the wall, so that they don’t even see it happening until it creates some serious issues, the other part is that they could electrocute themselves,” Smith says.
Although this hasn’t happened here locally, parents are concerned.
“In today’s age I think technology and social media is moving so fast and with parents we are never in front of it, we are behind it always trying to catch up,” said Alachua County PTA President, Pamela Korithoski.
Korithoski said it’s important to have conversations about this with your children.
“Actually, having a conversation about what is going on in their life and what they are doing on social media,” Korithoski said.