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The original item was published from 1/22/2020 10:54:26 AM to 5/1/2020 12:00:07 AM.

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Fire Department

Posted on: January 22, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Whitman Fire Department Warns Parents of Troubling Viral Teen Video Resulting in Fire Incidents


Chief Timothy J. Grenno would like to warn parents of a new viral teen video that may result in fire incidents.

State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey released an advisory today to inform the general public of two incidents that have taken place in Massachusetts. Though there have not been any reports of incidents involving these “challenges” taking place in Whitman, officials would like parents to be aware of the new challenge.

The challenge seen on the popular video app, TikTok, involves partially inserting the plug part of a phone charger into an outlet and sliding a penny down the wall onto the exposed prongs. This action results in sparks and can cause electrical system damage and, in some cases, a fire. To view the video of the challenge click here.

"We encourage parents to discuss outlet and electrical safety with their children," said Chief Grenno. "This new online challenge features videos of teens fooling around with chargers and outlets which results in electrical sparks and, in some cases, fire."

Chief Grenno would like to provide the following electrical fire safety tips from the U.S. Fire Administration:

  • Insert plugs fully into sockets.
  • If you have young children, install tamper-resistant electrical outlets.
  • Replace wall outlets if plugs do not fit tightly.
  • Do not overload outlets.
  • Never force a three-pronged plug into a two-slot outlet.

In addition to electrical fire safety, Chief Grenno would like to remind parents and children to discuss the dangers of certain online challenges and trends and recognizing dangerous activity on the internet.

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