Police fear more planking deaths

POLICE fear that as planking gains popularity there may be more injuries and potentially further deaths.

Tannum Sands man Acton Beale, 20, plunged from the seventh floor of a unit block in the inner suburb of Kangaroo Point, Brisbane, yesterday morning after attempting to plank on the balcony.

Police say he had been drinking alcohol.

Planking is a new recreational activity gaining popularity.

Plankers lie flat on their stomach in different environments and take photos of their efforts which are then shared amongst fellow plankers via social media.

Police are warning members of the public that planking may seem like a bit of light-hearted fun can quickly turn to tragedy if an accident occurs.

“People are trying to out-do each other by planking on structures or in precarious positions putting themselves and others at risk,” police said.

“The potential for disaster increases as more and more risks are taken to get the ultimate photo.”

Facebook page and the Australian Planking Facebook page pay tribute to Mr Beale.

“R.I.P Fellow planker,” one posting on the Australian Planking page said.

“I didn’t know him, but he was a planker like the rest of us.”

Another posting from friends of the young man said, “You will never be forgotten. It was hard news and I must add although you had fun doing what you died doing, it is a load of crap.”

Following the tragic death police are urging “plankers” to re-think their actions.

“We have seen a young man take this activity a step further and attempt to plank on a balcony.

“Unfortunately he has tragically fallen to his death,” Deputy Commissioner Ross Barnett said.

Police said emergency services attempted to revive Mr Beale at the scene but he died a short time afterwards.

Planking has become an international sensation after a man was arrested last week in Gladstone for planking on the boot of a police car.

On the weekend a news reader for Fox News in Denver, United States, planked the newsroom desk and a cheerleading squad in Pennsylvania were also filmed planking.

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