11-month-old girl dies after being left in car in Hialeah

HIALEAH, FLA. (WSVN) - An 11-month-old girl died after she was left alone inside her parents’ parked van in Hialeah, Monday afternoon.

According to Hialeah Police, at around 4:10 p.m., a fire rescue crew was dispatched to the scene, in the area of 3517 West 86th Terrace, inside a gated community on the west side of Interstate 75.

7Skyforce hovered above the home and captured a Hialeah Police cruiser parked behind the white van. Investigators said they found the child inside the white vehicle, which was parked in the driveway without the engine running.

Paramedics rushed the baby to Palmetto General Hospital, where doctors pronounced her dead.

A neighbor said the incident underscores the need for residents to be vigilant about their loved ones’ well-being. “We need to take care of any person inside the house,” said Jose Serna.

It is unclear at this time how long the baby was left inside the car, although police believe the child may have been left there for a few hours. Temperatures were in the mid-80s at the time the girl was found. Inside the car, however, it may have been much hotter.

First responders offered reminders of how to prevent tragedies when it comes to children in cars:

  1. Look before you lock. Open the back door and check the back seat to ensure that everyone is out of the car.
  2. Keep something you need in the back seat, like a cellphone, your briefcase, computer or ID badge, anything essential to your daily routine, beside your child.
  3. Keep a stuffed animal in the car seat. When a baby is in the seat, put the stuffed animal in the front, so that you are reminded a child is in the back.

Police continue to investigate Monday’s incident. No criminal charges have been filed so far.

Citing a study in California, The Miami Herald reported that eight babies have died in hot cars nationwide in 2016, to date. This is the first case in Florida this year.

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