Dangers that come along with ‘The Boiling Water Challenge'

There was a so-called challenge taking the Midwest by storm during the Polar Vortex. It involved throwing boiling water in the air and watching it steam or crystalize. While it looked cool, there have been many cases of dangerous fails. 

If you do a quick Google search of the Boiling Water Challenge, you’ll find some great videos, but there are also videos surfacing of the challenge backfiring. 

Minor burns from the challenge was reported on social media right here in Metro Detroit. In fact, at least one teen girl spent time in the burn unit at a local hospital with 2nd and 3rd degree burns on her neck and back. 

“It’s not surprising to me when you think about 12, 13 and 14-year-olds who think they are pretty invincible,” said Dr. Kelly Levasseur of the Pediatric Emergency Medicine at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak. 

That teen girl was treated first at Beaumont Hospital. 

“Especially a few days ago when it was so windy before it was able to crystalize that hot water came back on to their skin,” Levasseur said. 

Dr. Levasseur is a mom, too. Her son told her about the challenge. She got the appeal, but then had a second thought. 

“All I could think about was that there are so many opportunities for kids to burn themselves,” Levasseur said. 

With scalding type burns, get the wet clothes off, put something dry on and don’t use lotions or salves. Look for blistering, especially on your hands, feet, face or genitals. If blistering occurs in these areas, it’s then time to go to the ER. 

“The skin immediately turns red and we don’t know the depth of that burn for at least a couple hours,” Levasseur said. 

It should go without say, but exercise some extreme caution if you plan on throwing boiling water up in the air while you stand there. ‘

“If kids do want to do it, I recommend that kids of all ages have parental supervision,” said Levasseur.