Alcohol campaigners fear for Wearsiders as ‘Neknominate’ craze sweeps through Sunderland

Photo credit: Johnny Green/PA Wire
Photo credit: Johnny Green/PA Wire
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A DRINKING craze in which Wearsiders film themselves drinking as much alcohol as possible has been slammed as “dangerous and worrying”.

Known as Neknominate, the aim of the game is to complete a drinking dare – and then nominate someone online to do the same.

The craze started in Australia before making its way over to the UK, and has now arrived in Sunderland where social media users on Twitter and Facebook film themselves drinking excessively.

Whoever has been nominated has 24 hours to upload their video and pick more people to do it.

Twitter users in the city have been posting nominations on their pages as well as using the Instagram site to post their homemade videos. Colin Shevills, director of North East alcohol office Balance, said: “While this might seem like fun, we need to remember that this can be very dangerous.

“Alcohol is a poison and drinking it in these quantities can have some very damaging effects on a person’s health in both the short and long term.

“This sort of behaviour is what happens when the price, promotion and availability of alcohol is not controlled – drinking to an excessive degree is allowed to become a social norm, which is extremely worrying.

“I would strongly discourage everyone from taking part in this current craze and to drink within the safe limits recommended by the Government, which are no more than two to three units a day for women and no more than three to four a day for men.”

Meanwhile, two young Irish men have died, both apparent victims of Neknominate.

The body of 19-year-old Jonny Byrne, was recovered from the river at Milford Bridge in County Carlow. According to reports on social media he died after jumping in the river as part of a nomination.

Ross Cummins, 22, was found unconscious in a Dublin house on Saturday. He was taken to hospital but later pronounced dead.

A video posted to his Facebook page a week ago showed him taking part in Neknominate.