Tayside Police issue warning over ‘planking’ craze

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TAYSIDE Police have sent out a warning to ‘plankers’ throughout the area urging them to think carefully about the consequences of taking part in such an activity (writes Sarah McLean).

The ‘planking’ craze, also known as the ‘Lying Down Game’ originated in Australia before spreading across the globe. Participants lie face down with their arms by their sides in unusual and sometimes dangerous places before a picture is taken.

A number of websites have since sprung up including a facebook group called ‘Planking Scotland’. Many people have posted pictures of themselves or their friends ‘planking’ including a number from Forfar and the surrounding area.

Tayside Police have condemned the ‘planking’ craze and are encouraging those who take part to think about what could happen should they fall.

A spokesman said: “Clearly there are inherent dangers associated with this type of behaviour.

“We would appeal to anyone who is thinking of participating in this perilous activity to consider the possible consequences should they slip or fall.

“The belief that it’ll never happen to you is flawed. Tragic accidents can and do happen to people when they unnecessarily put themselves in harm’s way. They should consider the heartache that is caused to family and friends in the event of someone dear to them suffering fatal or life-altering injuries.”

Although no serious injuries have yet been reported in the UK the craze has already led to one death in Australia when a 20-year-old man fell from a seven-storey balcony.

A few weeks later another man was seriously injured when he fell from the bonnet of a moving car which was forced to brake suddenly.

The spokesman added that ‘plankers’ should also think about others who could be affected by their actions. He said: “These types of foolhardy actions also have the potential to put other’s lives at risk, not just members of the emergency services in the event of their being called to assist, but people close by who might step forward to help someone who is in difficulty.”

A spokesman for the Scottish Ambulance Service also shared concerns over the craze. He said: “We would always have concerns if people are putting themselves in harm’s way, especially for a craze.

“We would have to deal with any incident but if people are putting themselves at risk then we would be concerned about the potential increase in ambulance calls.”

The facebook group ‘Planking Scotland’ claims that it does not condone any ‘planking’ done in dangerous areas.

A description on the webpage states: “As stupid and easy as it may look, perfecting the plank takes skill and balance with a little determination.

“It may be best to start out with simple planks such as chairs and tables before you move onto harder ones such as fence rows and poles.

“We do not condone ‘planking’ that puts the ‘planker’ at risk of harm to themselves or others, it is meant to be fun so lets keep it that way.”