3-Year-Old Florida Boy Dies in Hot Car

It's the first such incident in Florida this year and the 11th in the country
By Mike L. Ford,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 12, 2022 7:19 PM CDT
3-Year-Old Florida Boy Dies in Hot Car
   (Getty - Kichigin)

A three-year-old Florida boy died Monday after his father left him in a car for up to six hours, per the Miami Herald. It happened outside Lubavitch Educational Center in Miami Gardens. Several of the boy’s siblings attend the same school, and both his parents are teachers there. It appears he was forgotten in the shuffle during morning arrival. Later, after someone mentioned they hadn’t seen the child, the father raced to the car, only to find him unresponsive. Paramedics were unable to revive the boy, and he was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Temperatures in the area hit 93 with a heat index of 103 on Monday. Weather Channel meteorologist Mike Bettes told CBS News the car’s interior probably reached about 134 within 30 minutes, which is "unsurvivable for a small child strapped inside a car seat or for pets." Police are investigating but no charges were filed as of Tuesday, according to Local 10; however, the medical examiner reported the "cause of death was determined to be hyperthermia and the manner of death was ruled accidental." The parents were identified as Rabbi Menachem Tauber and Nehama Tauber. In a statement, the school’s dean said the community is "beyond devastated" and "no words can capture the heartbreak and sadness we feel."

According to WESH, this is the first child to die in a hot car in Florida this year and the eleventh across the nation, including children in Georgia, Virginia, and Texas. Statistics from the NSC show pediatric heatstroke deaths have occurred in nearly every state since 1998, with an average of 38 per year across the country. Texas and Florida lead the nation with 136 and 100 deaths, respectively, during that timeframe. A record 53 children died in both 2018 and 2019, but such tragedies have dropped by half since the start of the pandemic. (More Florida stories.)

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