Police in Texas have rescued a baby who was found crying, sweating and covered in her own vomit inside a locked SUV on a searingly hot day.
According to a press release from the Duncanville Police Department, officers responded to the 900 block of Gemini Avenue at around 5pm on Friday after getting a call from a witness reporting a child who was left alone and appeared to be sleeping in a parked SUV.
The officer who arrived on the scene discovered the child restrained in her car seat in the backseat. The one-year-old girl was crying, sweating and was covered in vomit.
As the officer’s body camera video shows, he requested paramedics over his portable radio, then grabbed his baton and shattered the front passenger window to gain access to the stranded infant sobbing in the back.
He then opened the back door, revealing the barefoot child dressed in a floral outfit crying in her car seat.
‘I know, I know, I’m sorry,’ the officer is heard in the recording trying to calm the infant down while unbuckling her seat belt and removing her from the sweltering SUV.
According to the police, the officer placed the baby in his air-conditioned car until paramedics arrived.
The mother of the baby girl had arrived in the same SUV from which her child was rescued, along with the infant’s grandmother and two of her older siblings.
Temperatures were in the 90s in Duncaville on Friday afternoon.
‘All indications seem to point to this being a mistake caused by false assumptions and faulty communication about the infant’s well-being,’ the police department stated.
Police made a referral about the incident to Child Protective Services, as well as to a Dallas County Grand Jury to determine if civil or criminal charges should be filed.
‘The Duncanville Police Department is thankful this incident did not result in a more tragic outcome as so many unfortunate incidents of children being left in hot vehicles do,’ police stated. ‘Due to an alert and concerned citizen calling, and due to the definitive, quick actions of Officer Pinilla, both of whom will undoubtedly be regarded as heroes by the rescued infant for the rest of its life, a tragedy was averted.’
Research shows that when outside temperatures range from 80 to 100 degrees, the internal temperature of a vehicle can reach a scorching 130 to 172 degrees.
More than 50 children have died from heatstroke in vehicles in each of the last two years, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.