• 12-year-old Detroit girl burns nearly 50 percent of her body in ‘fire challenge'

    By: Lauren Padgett, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

    Updated:
    DETROIT, Mich. -

    The family of a 12-year-old girl is warning others against attempting a dangerous new trend among teens online, called the fire challenge.

    In the fire challenge, people douse themselves in flammable liquids and set themselves on fire.

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    Timiyah Landers, 12, attempted the challenge with her friends last week and is now in a local hospital with second- and third-degree burns covering nearly 50 percent of her body, her mom, Brandi Owens, told WXYZ.

    According to Inside Edition, things went terribly wrong for Landers after the fire fanned out across her body with lightning speed, while her friends watched in horror. 

    Owens believes her daughter’s body spray may have caused the fast-moving fire. 

    “She had taken a shower and rubbed herself down with ... spray and lotion [beforehand] and that stuff is flammable as well and caused for the fire to spread all over,” she told Inside Edition.

    Owens told The Washington Post her fiance, Marquell Sholar, tried to help put out the flames by grabbing Landers and putting her in the bathtub. 

    While he poured cold water over the teen, Owens told The Washington Post, she grabbed at her daughter’s clothing with her bare hands, ripping them off.

    “It was like a reflex, I didn’t even feel the fire,” Owens said. “I was just saving my daughter.”

    Owens told WXYZ her daughter and her friends found out about the fire challenge from social media and YouTube.

    “They need to delete this mess,” Owens said. “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.”

    Landers is expected to be in the hospital for several months and will have to undergo several surgical procedures, including skin grafts. 

    She is on a ventilator and requires a feeding tube while she recovers, her mother told Inside Edition

    A GoFundMe page has been set up to help her family with her care. 

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