SAINT Lucians are being warned against participating in the new social media craze called the ‘Milk Crate Challenge’ which originated in the United States and which is now popular in the region, Saint Lucia included.
Experts say dangerous injuries can occur as videos show people falling off precariously stacked crates. Such videos are now viral on social media.
Saint Lucia does not have milk crates, however Heineken crates are used by those involved in the trend, a situation that has gotten the attention of Heineken Saint Lucia, the company that uses the crates.
According to the company, its crates are solely designated for storing and transportation of drinks. The company strongly condemns the use of its crates in any promotion or participation of this challenge.
“Heineken Saint Lucia denounces the latest social media trend – the milk crate challenge and encourages Saint Lucians to be safety conscious and abstain from participating,” the company stated earlier this week, adding that despite the popularity of the challenge, it is extremely dangerous and has resulted in significant injury to many in other parts of the world.
“Our vision for safety is a culture of care! With this, it means extending beyond our operations and premises but also the safety of our customers and consumers alike. It is evident that this Crate Challenge has high risk factors and could result in very severe and permanent effects or even death. Hence, to reduce the likelihood of any such incidences we implore Saint Lucians to desist from any attempts at this,” said Safety Manager at Heineken Saint Lucia, Jeffaust William.
Weighing in on the trend is the Saint Lucia Medical and Dental Association (SLMDA).
“We urge Saint Lucians, particularly the young ones amongst us to restrain from participating in this dangerous Crate Challenge. It is scary. As health care professionals, given what we are facing, we are looking at this with a great deal of trepidation. Our health care system is already bearing the burden of COVID-19 in addition to treating chronic diseases. Therefore, the last thing we need is a huge influx of patients with trauma, as a result of participating in this” President of the Association, Dr. Clarke remarked.
The SLMDA further noted that the Milk Crate Challenge is very dangerous and has the potential to result in serious trauma requiring ICU admission.
“Please be aware that there is currently a severe shortage of hospital beds because of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and recent rise in cases. Therefore we would like to STRONGLY DISSUADE St. Lucians from participating in said activity,” stated Monique Monplaisir of the SLMDA.
The challenge became popular on the social platform known as TikTok and is all about participants taking on a set of milk crates precariously stacked in the shape of a pyramid. A participant would attempt to climb to the top and then back down again without toppling over.
Videos of people falling painfully have gone viral on social media racking up millions of views in the process. Now doctors all over the world are warning people of the dangerous injuries that can occur.
“It’s perhaps even worse than falling from a ladder,” said Shawn Anthony, an orthopaedic surgeon at Mount Sinai hospital in New York, speaking to the Washington Post. “It’s very difficult to brace yourself from the falls I’ve seen in these videos. They’re putting their joints at an even higher risk for injury,” he added.
George Gantsoudes, a Virginia-based orthopaedic surgeon, wrote on Twitter: “The orthopaedic surgeries required to fix problems caused by this may fall under the umbrella of ‘elective surgeries’.”
In a statement about the most recent challenge, a TikTok spokesperson said: “TikTok prohibits content that promotes or glorifies dangerous acts, and we remove videos and redirect searches to our community guidelines to discourage such content. We encourage everyone to exercise caution in their behavior whether online or offline.”
But is the crate challenge possible? The short answer is: Yes.