PURCELLVILLE, Va. — The father of a child who died in a hot car is pushing Congress to pass a law that would require cars to have alert systems detecting if a child was accidentally left in, or snuck into, a hot car.
According to WJLA, the Harrison family had newly adopted a boy, Chase, from Russia in 2008.
His father, Miles Harrison, had just driven back to Virginia from a trip to Ohio and was really tired. He also wasn’t used to the daycare drop-off routine.
Harrison drove to work on June 8, 2008, and accidentally left Chase, who was very quiet, in the backseat.
‘When my colleague came up to the door of my office and said: ‘Hey, do you have a doll in your car?’ Initially, it didn’t click, and then there was that moment. ‘Oh my God.’ I remember seeing him through the window, and I opened the door and I was uncontrollable. I was walking around, ‘Oh God, Oh God, Oh God,’” Harrison told the news outlet.
Harrison said he struggled to live with himself and still can’t forgive himself.
He was tried on manslaughter charges and found not guilty by a jury. His defense called the incident a terrible accident.
Now, Harrison walks through Congress pushing lawmakers to pass the “Hot Car Act.”
He says had his vehicle had the detection technology that exists in vehicles now, his son would still be alive. He said he knows he is unable to do anything about the loss his family has suffered which is why he’s dedicated to helping ensure other children are kept safe.
Meanwhile, in retaliation for U.S. sanctions against Russia, that country banned American adoptions of Russian children, WJLA reports. The Russians reportedly named the ban the “Chase Harrison Act.”