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State Fire Marshal warns about new social media 'challenge'

Posted: 7:38 PM, Jan 23, 2020
Updated: 2020-01-23 19:38:31-05
Authorities warn of fire-causing 'outlet challenge' seen on TikTok, Youtube

State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci is warning parents of a new viral teen video which may result in fire incidents and can cause serious injury.

The challenge which is on the app TikTok, involves using the plug part of a phone charger, partially inserting it into the wall outlet, and then sliding a penny down the wall onto the exposed prongs. The result is sparks, electrical system damage, and in some cases, fire.

"We are alerting parents to this challenge, and advise them to not only look for signs of fire play like scorched outlets but to have conversations about fire and electrical safety with tweens and teenagers," Geraci said.

As a reminder, the Fire Marshal listed the following electrical fire safety tips.

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