A Florida mom, Shana Dees, was having a normal day of running errands with her 10 month old baby boy, Jack, when every parent’s worst nightmare happened. Shana had just finished shopping at the New Tampa CVS, unloaded her cart, and picked up baby Jack and strapped him in his car seat.
Suddenly, Shana noticed that she had a “runaway cart” like all of us have had happen at some point in time. She ran to grab the cart before it possibly struck another car, and in what she says was just a mere three seconds, she turned back to realize that she had shut the door with Jack inside holding her car keys in his sweet baby hands.
Not only was baby Jack holding her keys, but he pushed the lock button on her key fob, locking her out — but more dangerously, locking himself inside the hot car on a 96 degree summer Florida day, according to Yahoo! News. Shana realized the situation had gone from bad to worse when she noticed her purse and cell phone were also locked inside her car.
Georgia Newsday reports that Shana was able to grab a man in the parking lot and begged him to let her use his phone to call 911.
As Shana called 911, she tried to stay calm, but was beginning to get more frantic as Georgia Newsday reveals Shana stating,
“I was just sitting there, watching him get hotter and turn redder — and he was soaked with sweat.”
When Shana called 911, she told the dispatcher,
“My infant son is locked in the car in the parking lot. It is so hot outside. I’m really concerned, like I don’t think I have time to call AAA before he would suffer heat exhaustion. Can somebody come out and open the door? I don’t even know if that is something you guys do.”
We all believe we know what the response would be on the other end of that 911 call, but what actually happened may not only shock you, but enrage you, as it has Shana Dees.
The 911 dispatcher simply replied to Shana, according to Yahoo! News by saying,
“They won’t be able to try to gain access [to the] car unless the child is in some kind of distress and, well, by that point they may just smash your windows.”
Then the call went silent.
Luckily, for baby Jack’s sake, about eight minutes later, an off-duty police officer happened to see Shana completely distraught, and stopped to ask if she needed help. The officer ended up calling 911 again.
When the officer told the second dispatcher what Shana had been told, the dispatcher said that Shana was not told the correct information. The second dispatcher asked for Shana’s location and immediately dispatched an officer to help.
The clock is still ticking while baby Jack is getting hotter and hotter in the sweltering car. According to ABC News, the temperature in a car can increase by 30 degrees in a mere 15 minutes, and it was getting near that 15 minute mark for baby Jack.
Before the officers arrived, a CVS customer went inside the store, grabbed a wrench, came back out and smashed Shana’s car window, rescuing Jack.
An average of 38 children die every year from being trapped in a hot car, according to kidsandcars.org.
This was a serious event that should have been handled completely different. While an investigation is underway by the Tampa Police Department, their spokesperson, Laura McElroy stated that the dispatcher “absolutely made a mistake,” as reported by Georgia Newsday. McElroy continues to say,
“The dispatcher should’ve kept the mother on the line, should’ve found out where she was and then immediately dispatched both a police officer and fire rescue.”
Currently, Yahoo! News reports that the dispatcher is on administrative duty instead of answering any 911 phone calls.
Jack is fine, but Mommy is hacked.
Photo Credit: ABCActionNews.com