By Jackie Burrell
Tuesday, April 20th, 2010 at 2:21 pm in Health & Safety.
The heartbreaking tale of the 7-month-old Antioch baby who died after her parents forgot her in the car overnight is a tragic reminder that cases of this sort crop up with horrifying frequency. An average of 37 babies die each year in hot cars, vans or SUVs; 445 babies since 1998. Authorities in the Antioch case are still investigating cause of death – temperatures dropped to 52 degrees and rose as high as 78 between the time tiny Sofia Wisher was accidentally left in the car at 11:30 p.m. Saturday night and when she was found at 2 p.m. on Sunday.
The very idea of forgetting one’s baby in the car is unfathomable, but the truth is, it can happen to anyone, anytime. And that horrifying truth is explained incredibly well in a story that, coincidentally, just earned Washington Post writer Gene Weingarten a Pulitzer Prize. Weingarten’s story, “Fatal Distraction,” takes you into the lives and hearts of the people it’s happened to, and sounds a warning bell for every parent who’s ever been exhausted, distracted or had a change of routine. In other words, all of us. Read it. Read it now. With a box of tissues nearby.