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Online game sparks craze of children daring each other to run across busy roads

By Anna Liesowska
12 June 2015

Videos capture trend of youngsters racing in front of traffic, often with tragic consequences.

Doctors say they are aware of the growing problem, which is also gaining popularity in other parts of Russia such as Samara, Arkhangelsk and Khabarovsk. Picture: Mir24

Schoolchildren in Yekaterinburg have come up with a dangerous new game -- running across the road into the path of moving cars.

A craze has swept across the region over the winter months, with some experts saying the idea was created by people playing a similar online video game. In many cases the youngsters do it for real to win money, while for others it is a test simply to show how brave they are.

But with instances of it on the rise, there has been at least one tragedy, with a 12-year-old boy killed instantly after being hit by a car. A second youngster was seriously injured.

The computer game that has sparked the craze tests a player’s ability to run across the road while avoiding collisions with vehicles in order to pick up points.

Deadly game


Deadly game

The computer game that has sparked the craze tests a player’s ability to run across the road while avoiding collisions with vehicles in order to pick up points. Pictures: The Siberian Times

One 12-year-old girl, who wishes to remain anonymous, said: 'This winter all the boys played this online game and now play for money, for a hundred roubles. They wait for the red traffic light and rush across the street. If you run across successfully you get the money.'

In April a nine-year-old boy tried to cross the road as part of his dare and was hit by a car. While the driver tried to avoid him, the youngster ended up with a hip fracture.

Sergey Brotnikov, the driver of the car, recalled: 'I saw the group of children by the roadside, and caught the eye of one of the boys and noted that he was looking at me. I thought that because he saw me he would wait until the car passed, but suddenly he ran right across the road in front.'

After the accident, one of the boy’s friends explained the rules of the 'game'. He said: 'You need to run across the road, so the cars do not hit you. You need to run across the road right in front of the car.'

Tatiana Berdnikova, head of the press department for the Yekaterinburg road police, said: 'This game has become a sore subject for us. But we work only with violations of traffic rules - kids games are not our diocese, and we are not psychologists and educators.'

Deadly game


Deadly game


Deadly game


Deadly game

They wait for the red traffic light and rush across the street. If you run across successfully you get the money.' Pictures: Mir24, E1.ru

Doctors say they are aware of the growing problem, which is also gaining popularity in other parts of Russia such as Samara, Arkhangelsk and Khabarovsk. 

Evgeny Kozhevnikov, head of the casualty department at the City Clinical Hospital No.2, said: 'It is very difficult to say how many children injured in car accidents did it playing this game. The patients mostly try to hide the reason, because children tend to hide such things, fearing the anger of parents.'

Most of the incidents are captured on dash cams in the cars of the driver, but it is known that children themselves are also shooting their 'feats' on camera and then sharing them with each other.

Comments (5)

Children who live near busy roads are at a higher risk. Our study shows that's not necessarily the case on busy roads where traffic doesn't stop
5stars auto parts, Australia
12/10/2020 17:44
0
0
Children are prone to risk taking but this is moronic. They should be discouraged but I don't know how.
jaycee, south Africa
09/07/2015 13:29
0
0
@Darwin- you are heartless and ignorant. It's a fact that boys and young men have the highest risk of accidental death, and this story is a good example of why. Until they mature they fail to recognize risks and consequences, coupled with the sub-conscious illusion they are infallible. This is sad, but it is human nature. It is up to parents and others to try and impress on these youngsters of the dangers of this game, but even that isn't always effective.
rose beninger, USA
18/06/2015 03:56
5
0
Please babys don't do this
todd, Austrailia
16/06/2015 03:43
13
0
People that are Stupid make their contribution to the gene pool, by removing themselves from it.
Darwin, USA
13/06/2015 03:34
3
5
1

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