CHESAPEAKE, VA – It’s the kind of story that makes us all sick.
Tuesday, police and medical personnel responded to report of a baby left unattended in a vehicle. Police were called around 12:35pm for a report of a child left in the car at the 900 blocks of Adventure Way in Deep Creek.
The baby was declared dead by medical personnel at the local hospital.
It was determined the baby was just 8 months old. It appears the baby girl was left in the car for several hours unattended. Medics tried to resuscitate the baby girl at the scene before transporting to the hospital. The baby girl’s identity has not been released and neither has the identity of the owner of the vehicle.
The Chesapeake Police Department Detective Alison Robare said that they are not sure of the cause of death. They are waiting for the results of the autopsy. No arrests have been made as of Tuesday. The police provided no other details.
The temperatures in the City of Chesapeake on Tuesday were recorded as 102 degrees. There was a heat advisory until 8pm on Tuesday, where temperatures were supposed to reach the upper 90s. DailyMail News reported that scientifically, it would take about 30 minutes for the temperature inside a vehicle to reach 129 degrees on a day where the temperature was 95 degrees.
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On July 1, the House of Representatives passed the Hot Cars Act which is federal bill that would require any affordable and available technology that would detect if a child was inside of a vehicle. The Senate, however, has not voted on the bill yet.
It was reported that every year an average of 39 children die from being left inside hot cars in the United States. In 2020, 14 children have died due to being left unattended in hot cars.
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Daily News reported that this is the second infant that has been left inside a hot car this summer in Virginia. Fairfax County Police reported that in June, an 11-month old baby girl died after being unintentionally left in the car by her father.
The baby girl was found in the vehicle unresponsive by police and was taken to the hospital and was pronounced dead. Officers responded to the 6400 block of Meriweather Lane in Springfield, Virginia at about 5pm on a Friday, June 26.
A Fairfax Police Department spokesperson, said they are investigating and so far have found that the father left the 11-month old baby in the car inadvertently for several hours. She was left in the backseat of the father’s SUV at his Springfield home. He left the baby girl inside the SUV while he used another vehicle to complete some errands.
The father did not notice the child until he used the SUV to pick up another child from a day care center. The Office of the Chief Medical Examiner were conducting an autopsy on the child. As of June 30 there were no charges filed and no report from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner regarding the cause of death.
WUSA 9 News reported that back in 2008 there was another fatality of an infant left inside an unattended vehicle. Miles Harrison left his baby boy in the back seat of his SUV while he was at work. Miles said: “This is also one week from the anniversary of it happening to me. Horror goes through my mind and then also worried and concerned for the father that just has gone through this and his whole family.”
Harrison was charged with his son’s death but found not guilty.
Amber Rollins with KidsandCars.org reported to WUSA 9 News: “56% of car deaths happen when a child is unknowingly or unintentionally left in the vehicle. And this is loving, responsible, highly educated many times parents and caregivers. They are the people who read every parenting book, who covered every outlet, and took every safety precaution but never thought that they could forget or lose awareness of their baby.”
Rollins reported that in 2018 and 2019 there were over 100 children that died from being left in hot cars; 2018 and 2019 were the worst years in history.
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