We’re barely into the summer months and already two children have died after irresponsible so-called “adults” neglected their responsibilities and left their precious little snowflakes to melt inside a sweltering vehicle — this time because a Florida “father” forgot to take his sixteen-month-old daughter to daycare.
Stupidity on the part of parents is somewhat of an epidemic. “Sadly heat stroke claimed the lives of 30 children last year and 44 children the year before,” said Kate Carr, president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide. “So far this year, there have been two reported deaths from heatstroke in cars.”
Being trapped inside a hot vehicle is very dangerous for children. Carr notes that “a car can heat up about 19 degrees in as little as 10 minutes.” She cautions that lower temperatures are not an excuse to leave children in the car, either. “We’ve seen heat stroke deaths recorded when the temperature is in the 60s,” Carr said, suggesting that parents avoid leaving their children unattended in a vehicle, even if they are running a short errand.
According to Q13FOX, the body of a child can heat up three-to-five times faster than that of an adult.
Wendy Timonera Kwon did not even make it to her second birthday before she was killed by her parents’ negligence. Q13FOX reports that:
The Columbia County Combined Communication Center received a 911 call at 3:14 p.m. Tuesday saying the girl had been in a car and was no longer breathing, a Sheriff’s Office news release said.
Paramedics and deputies responded to a house owned by the Kwons and found the deceased child. Temperatures on Tuesday afternoon in the area were in the low 90s, according to local reports.
Young Kwon, the baby’s father, was supposed to take the child to day care, but he says there was a “misunderstanding.” According to Kwon, he only discovered his daughter was in the car after his return from work. The investigation has not cleared up how the child ended up in the car in the first place, if Kwon was not aware of her presence.
“They just don’t make them any better than Young and Wendy,” said Blair Payne, Kwon’s public defender. “He was great with his kids. There is absolutely no way that this was anything other than just a horrendous accident.” Great with kids — until he left one in the back of a vehicle while he went to work, that is.
Carr urges parents to take measures to ensure that they do not forget their child in the backs of vehicles. “Put something in the back seat where a child seat is always located that you’re going to need at your final destination, something you know you’re going to look for, like your cell phone, your purse, a briefcase,” Carr said. “This, in fact, can happen to anyone, and we’ve seen it happen to anyone.”
Under Florida law, it is illegal to leave a child under 6-years-old unattended for more than fifteen minutes.
It is yet unclear if Kwon will face charges. “This is still an active investigation, and we’re still in the process of conducting interviews,” Gretl Plessinger of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement said. Because both parents work in the judicial system, the investigation was turned over to the FLDE.
This gross irresponsibility places Kwon on par with Arizona man James Konyor, who left his 2 1/2-year-old son in the family sedan for hours in April while he got drunk. Temperatures in Phoenix that day hovered in the 90s, so the car’s interior was easily over 100 degrees. Police say the child, Alpha Konyor, struggled to escape from the vehicle for more than two hours before the child succumbed to heat stroke.
Watch a report on this horrendous negligence, below:
Featured image: via WXTL