Derek and Ali Dodd drove their infant son to the local day care. They dropped him off and everything was as usual. What they didnt realize is that a careless mistake would end up causing irreversible damage to their family forever.
A Preventable Tragedy
It was in the day care facility where an employee was to place little Shepard down for his nap. But rather than put him in a crib, the employee placed him in his car seat. Two hours later Shepherd had turned blue. 911 was called. It was too late.
A Silent Killer
Its a silent killer. When leaving a baby in a car seat or bouncer, they can actually suffocate when not properly strapped. This is how Shephard passed away. Positional asphyxiation is the official term.
“I was able to kiss him on the forehead as they wheeled him in. He was cold. So I knew it was coming.”
That same day Shepard passed on, leaving the parents to grieve like theyve never done before.
ALoss That Cannot Be Imagined
Not many people are aware that positional asphyxia is pretty common and babies succumb to this tragedy frequently.
The family is incredibly heartbroken as they lost a member at such a young age. He wasnt just a son, he was also a brother and the older sibling was in deep mourning as well.
No One Would Know
The report from the day care actually failed to mention their sons death.
“What it says on there for our incident…it says she allowed a baby to sleep in a car seat. It doesn’t say anything about him dying. Even parents, wouldn’t even know that he died in her care.”
Parents were continuing to put their kids in this facility. A facility where a child had died at the hands of an employee, yet the public went unaware that the incident had occurred.
The Biggest Shock
It turns out that a recent code violation had been issued to the day care and the staff had been instructed about the harm regarding putting kids in car seats to sleep.
“She knew better. She was counseled just days before by DHS. She had had a violation eleven days before.”
It took months, but eventually the day care had their license revoked for undisclosed reasons.
They’re Not Alone
“She was strong,” said Jennifer Albright. “She was healthy. There was nothing wrong with her.”
Jennifer’s two-month-old daughter Emily passed away from positional asphyxiation just likeShepard but she was in her bouncy seat.
Now Jenniferlooks at her scrapbooks to keep the memory of Emily alive. Her mistake was one that any parent could make.
It’s EasyTo See
Check out this image. When you see your baby slouched in the car seat, this means the airway can easily become blocked and enough oxygen simply cannot reach the babys lungs.
The heavy newborn head cannot support its own neck so the airflow can get restricted and suffocation then takes place slowly.
Sleeping with your little ones can also be a cause of this. Ideally the baby needs to be in a secluded and safe environment for sleeping.
Some education sources recommend for when your baby falls asleep in your arms or on the couch, to actually place them on their back, on the floor. The thinking is that this is much safer than being on the sofa or in a chair where suffocation could occur more easily.
Check out this important video below to learn more:
More information is provided in the original report from KFOR below.
Remember this graphic on your next outing
Heres a anagram that is easy to follow and should ensure that your family does not suffer from this kind of preventable tragedy. Always remember the ABCDEF rule and be sure to print this picture out or save it on your phone so you will always have it with you. Be sure to share this with other parents as well.
Remember the ABCDEF rule. Save this picture on your phone or computer and share to others with infants and small children in their lives.
Learn From Their Story
Their story should at least do some good for others and can potentially prevent parents from going through the shock and extreme mourning that this family went through, and no doubt continues to experience. If you ever get lazy and just want to let your child rest in his carseat, then remember this story.
These parents want to spread their story far and wide as to prevent it from happening to other families. Positional asphyxiation is a huge deal that needs to be given much more attention. The parents are currently lobbying for making sleeping standards for babies a high priority in Oklahoma.
Always think twice about leaving a child in their car seat. Is it worth getting a little extra quiet time for yourself? Derek knows that it isnt and says the following:
“It’s not worth getting a little more sleep or 30 minutes more of quiet time. It’s just not worth it when it’s as dangerous as it is.”
Stop the parental habit of allowing kids to nap in their car seat. It simply is not safe and as you see, can definitely be deadly. Tuck them in their proper sleeping area and dont risk the potential deadly outcome of allowing your baby to sleep in a car seat.
Read more: http://damn.com/fatal-car-seat-mistake/