Sweeping the internet like a whirlwind, the ALS ice bucket challenge is taken by participants in an attempt to promote increased awareness of ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and raise funds not only for research into ALS, but also for motor neurone diseases and other charities.
Participants agree to have someone throw icy water at them while being filmed. They then challenge relatives, friends or colleagues to do the same. People who were nominated in this fashion have a day to comply or forfeit the challenge by making a donation to a charity of their choice.
Challenges can go wrong and the risk of personal injuries to both participants and those helping them, as well as potentially serious effects on the participant’s health are ever present. The clip posted by a participant called Simon Vu on the 14th of August 2014 shows some of these risks.
This clip shows a girl standing on a chair throwing a bucket of water over Simon. As she empties the bucket, she gets too close to the edge of the chair, slips and falls off. While the clip does not show whether she suffered a personal injury as she crashed backwards onto and then off the chair, but it is highly likely that she suffered at least some bruising. In a worst case scenario, she could have broken an arm, a leg or even her spine in this fall.
Simon’s initial reaction to her fall, an apparent total lack of concern, may well have been the result of cold shock triggered by being hit by freezing cold water. Trying to accelerate Simon’s heart rate, this cold shock could have had three possible outcomes, namely the reaction recorded here; a flight reaction causing him to run away, or, if combined with the diving response (which is triggered by being hit in the face with water and causes heart rates to slow), could have caused his heart rate to become abnormal (a condition referred to as arrhythmia). This in turn could have triggered a potentially fatal heart attack in Simon.
Not all slips, trips and falls, or indeed other accidental injuries, are self-inflicted. Sometimes people are injured by slipping, tripping or falling through no fault of their own. If this happened to you, you may be entitled to personal injury compensation. Speak to an Accident Advice Helpline advisor for answers to any claim related questions you may have.
Date Published: September 30, 2014
Author: Accident Advice