For many people, getting that perfect Instagram picture (and the subsequent likes it gets you) is an addiction. Case in point, Russian teen Andrey Retrovsky, who got a big rush posing for photos in dangerous situations, whether he was hanging from the ledge of a high-rise apartment building or standing precariously on the edge of metal scaffolding.
Unfortunately for the 17-year old, his latest stunt ended up costing him his life. Last week, Retrovsky climbed to the top of a building in Vologda, Russia, with a friend in hopes of snapping a photo that made it appear as if he was falling from the roof. Tragically, the rope used to secure him to the building failed, and he plunged nine stories to the ground. His fall was slightly cushioned by bushes, but according to local Russian media outlets, he died a few hours later while being treated at a hospital from extensive injuries.
Andrey was part of a youth subculture known as “roofers,” who climb to the roofs of high-rise buildings (often after sneaking in illegally) to take daring Instagram photos that they’ll hope will go viral. Selfie fatalities have become a serious problem in Russia.
In the past year alone, 10 Russians died and more than 100 were injured while taking selfies. This problem has prompted the Russian government to launch a “Safe Selfie” campaign, which features the tagline, “even a million likes on social media are not worth your life.”
Just something to think about the next time you put yourself at risk, all in the name of the almighty selfie..