London Fire Brigade issues warning over the swing TikTok trend
Forgive me for sounding like a complete millennial here, but that TikTok has a lot to answer for eh?
You probably saw the viral photo above of the teenage girl stuck in a baby swing in a playground in Ruislip, west London this week — I'm claustrophobic just thinking about it.
The teen had to be rescued by a team of fire fighters, who dismantled the child's swing to set her free.
Her reason for being in the swing in the first place? A TikTok trend... Give me strength.
In their quest for #TikTok fame #London teenagers have been forcing themselves into toddlers’ swings and getting stuck - ending in a call out to firefighters to rescue them. Please think twice so you don't divert our crews from more serious incidentshttps://t.co/Lr96LsgMT3 pic.twitter.com/ezRCMg1pLm
— London Fire Brigade (@LondonFire) May 11, 2021
If my tone here sounds less than sympathetic, it's probably because that's exactly how I feel.
We were all kids once and got up to all sorts of messing, but wasting emergency services' time for a TikTok video just won't wash with me.
And that's not even touching on the risk of personal injury and the destruction of public property.
Yes, I realise I've gone full Mr. Heckles at this point.
(A Friends reference — peak millennial.)
London Fire Brigade have reportedly attended 21 instances of teenagers getting stuck in swings, all linked to the social media trend.
As a result, they've had to issue a warning asking people not to partake in the trend. Yep, they had to ask people not to insert themselves into things that are clearly too small for them.
"The crew had to dismantle the swing and then use pressure to expand it around where the girl was stuck so they could rescue her. On this occasion they were able to reassemble the swing and the teenager was fortunately uninjured," they said.
"Firefighters from Ruislip Fire Station’s Green Watch who attended the job said they were conscious they were being filmed by the girl’s friends but they hadn’t previously been aware of the challenge.
"Crews will sometimes be able to get the person out without using cutting equipment, but they sometimes do have to, resulting in a damaged swing which then has to be replaced."
The Brigade’s Assistant Commissioner for Fire Stations, Jane Philpott, added: “Our firefighters attend a wide variety of challenging incidents and far be it from us to judge the precarious positions some people find themselves in.
"But in their quest for TikTok fame, people have been potentially diverting our crews from more serious incidents and that isn’t something we want to see.
“Each job our firefighters do attend takes time and we are hoping to prevent further call outs to such incidents by issuing this warning.
“We would ask people to please just think twice before taking part in this challenge – think of the injuries you could cause yourself, the damage to the swings which have to be cut apart and most of all the fact you’re tying up resources which could be needed for a genuine emergency.
“It might be a fun story for your friends, but wasting the time of emergency services is serious.”
I think I speak for us all when I say, can you just not?