A Detroit mother is warning other parents about a dangerous internet challenge that nearly cost her 12-year-old daughter her life.
Brandi Owens told The Washington Post her 12-year-old daughter, Timiyah Landers, was hanging out with friends at her home last Friday when all of a sudden she heard a loud pop. Quickly after, Owens and her fiancée saw Timiyah run down the hallway with her body completely engulfed in flames. Owens told the Post her daughter “looked like a fireball.”
Brandi and her fiance extinguished the blaze from her baby girl and rushed her to the hospital.
Timiyah was transferred to Children’s Hospital, where she is being treated for severe second and third-degree burns over 49 percent of her body, reported WXY-TV.
Owens is furious that these “outrageous” challenges on social media and YouTube have caused such harm to people.
“They need to delete this mess," Owens tearfully told WXY. "It should be censored. That’s nothing that a kid should come across. I could have lost my baby, by the grace of God she’s alive. If I wasn’t home, I would have walked in to my baby dead."
The Detroit Free Press reported that the "fire challenge" has been around social media since at least 2012. The challenge typically involves participants pouring rubbing alcohol on themselves before lighting themselves on fire. According to the Free Press noted, rubbing alcohol is a thin liquid and often burns quickly before causing severe harm to the person
However, Owens to the Post that Timiyah’s was wearing body spray at the time, which exacerbated the fire.
“They weren’t expecting it to go that way,” Owens said. “It was just a challenge, so it’s a lesson learned for all of them.”
Owens said her daughter, Timiyah, knew better, but she is still urging parents to monitor their kids on social media.
Timiyah will likely be in the hospital for several months and will undergo several more surgeries.
A GoFundMe page has been set up for Timiyah’s medical expenses.