Got A Tip?

Star Seeker


TikTok 'Boat Challenge' Supposedly Leaves Four Dead In Alabama -- But That May Not Be The Whole Story??

TikTok 'Boat Challenge' Supposedly Leaves Four Dead In Alabama -- But That May Not Be The Whole Story??

Some officials in the state of Alabama are pleading with social media users after they claim at least four people have died this year while filming videos in which they jump off moving boats.

This TikTok trend is apparently called the “boat challenge,” and according to some first responders in the Southern state, it’s apparently creating a lot of chaos and tragedy for those who attempt it.

Related: Teen Shot & Killed By Off-Duty Corrections Officer While Doing TikTok Challenge

In the social media challenge, TikTokers record videos of themselves and friends jumping off the sides and back of moving boats. But because some of these boats are going really fast across the water, these stunts can sadly turn fatal in an instant.

According to NBC News, rescue officials in Alabama say four people have died in that state over the last six months while trying to film these videos. Captain Jim Dennis of the Childersburg Rescue Squad in the central part of the state just outside Birmingham is quoted as saying:

“The four that we responded to when they jumped out of the boat, they literally broke their neck and, you know, basically an instant death.”


Now, the actual stunt itself is not new. Per TODAY, TikTok users have been doing some variation of the boat-jumping challenge for at least three years. For example, watch this video (below) which was filmed in June of 2020 and shows two women jumping from a slower-moving boat into a lake:


Let’s just jump off a moving boat #lake #lakeside #boating #boats #swim #tiktok #fyp #foryou #foryoupage

♬ original sound – JaclynPrestidge

Seems simple enough, right?

The problem is that many of these videos are filmed with boats going much faster than that. Plus, jumpers are diving wildly, landing on their backs, and going into the water headfirst. Because of all that, experts are begging TikTokers to understand how “hard” the water can be when a boat is moving at high speed.

Related: TikTok Challenge Gone Wrong Sends New Mom To Hospital As Cops Seek Pranksters

Gail Kulp, the executive director of the Sea Tow Foundation which promotes boating and water safety nationwide, explained the danger to TODAY on Monday:

“Hitting the water from a moving boat is like hitting concrete from jumping multiple stories stories up.”

Kulp made it clear that jumping out of a moving boat is “really, really dangerous,” and added:

“You can wind up with broken bones a broken neck, or you could end up running into the propeller of your own boat or another boat could run over you and that would cause lots of damage if not death.”

So scary!

TikTok pushed back pretty hard on whether this water stunt is a “challenge” on the social media app. In a statement about the story made to NBC News on Monday, its parent company ByteDance noted:

“It’s not accurate to characterize or report this as a TikTok challenge … TikTok can’t comment on something that isn’t a trend on our platform.”

The video-sharing app then pointed the national news outlet to their community guidelines, which specifically forbid users from posting content promoting dangerous activities:

“We do not allow showing or promoting dangerous activities and challenges… and advising If you see a dangerous activity or challenge, pause for a moment to stop and think before you decide and act.”

Makes sense. After all, it’s understandable that TikTok wants to separate itself from what some of its users do. They’re basically saying “don’t try this s**t at home.” And you shouldn’t!!

Related: 16-Year-Old Burned Nearly 80 Percent Of His Body After TikTok Challenge Gone Wrong

But wait a second… because that may not be the whole story?!?!

After TODAY reported on the alleged challenge-related deaths across Alabama, the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency came out with a very strong statement pushing back on the news.

Referencing a prior local news report in the state that ran last Monday and kicked this whole thing off, the ALEA straight-up denied that any deaths had occurred in Alabama due to any TikTok-related boat challenge:

OK, so wait a second. The aforementioned Alabama-based rescue squad staffer Jim Dennis was quoted as saying there have been four fatalities in the last six months, right? And yet now ALEA says there have been no fatalities?

One thing is for certain: don’t jump out of a fast-moving boat! No matter where you hear about it! Sounds like the experts all seem to agree on that matter, at least.

Related: Father Of 13-Year-Old Who Died In TikTok ‘Benadryl Challenge’ Warns Of Dangers

For more on the story, you can watch TODAY‘s reporting from Monday (below):

Wow. Whether it’s a real issue in Alabama or not, some of those jumps definitely look unsafe AF. Just saying! Reactions, Perezcious readers?? Share ’em down in the comments (below)…

[Image via ABC 7 News/YouTube]

Related Posts

Jul 12, 2023 08:11am PDT

Share This