Warning as TikTok trend sees teenagers getting stuck in toddler swings

A TikTok challenge where teenagers, and young adults, squeeze themselves into toddler's swings at the park is "wasting firefighters time" according to the assistant commissioner of London Fire Brigade (LFB).

The "craze" which has been sweeping the country for the last couple of years is showing signs of increasing once again as evenings become lighter and teens spend more time outside socialising.

So far in 2021 fire crews from LFB have attended 21 incidents where people have become stuck in swings, the total increases to 105 when all instances across the country are counted.

Crews use a variety of techniques to release people from the swings including hydraulic cutting equipment which often results in the playground equipment having to be replaced, reports MyLondon.

Footage of the challenge is shared on video community TikTok in the hope it will go viral.

The phenomenon started last year but firefighters have noticed a resurgence in the UK in recent weeks and a number of other fire and rescue services have spoken out about the number of calls they are attending, urging teenagers to think twice before getting stuck and wasting firefighters’ time.

Last year firefighters assisted 52 people stuck in swings and in 2019 there were 32 such incidents.

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The majority of those in previous years and this year took place during the early evening.

The Brigade’s assistant commissioner for fire stations, Jane Philpott, said: “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.”

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