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Teen severely burned in online "fire challenge"

SANTA ANA, Calif. -- Authorities say a 16-year-old Southern California boy has suffered burns after setting himself on fire for an online dare.

The Orange County Register reports that investigators believe the teen was trying the "fire challenge" that has spread on social media.

Fire Capt. Larry Kurtz told the Register the teen apparently placed nail polish remover on his chest and lit it Friday afternoon in his Santa Ana home.

Kurtz says the boy was taken to a hospital with first- and second-degree burns on his face, neck and hips but the injuries aren't considered life-threatening.

The incident is the first time the Orange County Fire Authority has dealt with someone attempting the dare, but similar accidents have been reported in various parts of the country and online videos show several people performing similar stunts before putting out the flames.

Nail polish remover is an alcohol-based liquid and thus highly flammable.

"You're setting your skin on fire for nothing else than someone dares you," said Kurtz. "It's sort of the equivalent of putting gasoline on yourself."

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