DELAND, Fla. — A sheriff in Florida is sharing a warning and also thanking a good Samaritan after a baby was found and rescued from inside a hot car.
According to the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office, a woman is charged with child neglect after leaving the infant alone inside the vehicle with the windows up while she went inside a store; temperatures were about 93 degrees.
Sheriff Mike Chitwood says the incident is a reminder to everyone to “take some simple steps to avoid a potential tragedy.”
Sheriff’s deputies responded to the call earlier this week in a store parking lot in Orange City. A passerby called 911 after noticing the baby was left in the car. The door was unlocked and witnesses opened it and found the 8-month-old boy was okay.
Deputies say the mom, Meagan Burgess, 33, arrived back at the vehicle 24 minutes after the 911 call was made. She told deputies she forgot the baby was in the car after dropping off several other children with a family member. According to the sheriff’s office, she said leaving the baby in the car was her worst fear.
The sheriff’s office provided this information in its post:
“The National Safety Council and the safety organization Kids and Cars estimates 37 children die each year as a result of being left alone in hot vehicles. Last year, 42 died. The website noheatstroke.org reports 767 children have died due to pediatric vehicular heatstroke since 1998.
Some tips to prevent these tragedies include NEVER leaving a child alone in a car, even when it feels cool enough outside to be safe. Temperatures inside a vehicle can rise 20 degrees in 10 minutes, and infants are particularly vulnerable to heatstroke. Many parents make a habit of leaving something essential in the back seat that they can’t leave without – a purse, a wallet, a cell phone or even a shoe.”
The sheriff gave a special thank you to a woman named Jessica Kaiser who noticed the baby was alone in the car.
**Watch the sheriff’s video, below**