A Texas toddler has died after a fatal malfunction of a heating unit in the family’s home. With the Texas couple’s home running on two HVAC units, one for the downstairs and one for the upstairs, they had no idea that, as they slept at a comfortable temperature downstairs, the upstairs of the family home was reaching triple digit temperatures.
Unfortunately, the couple’s 17-month-old toddler had a bedroom upstairs and would die from hyperthermia, an increase in body temperature from an outside source, due to the heating unit malfunction. Now the couple is speaking out in a bid to ensure this terrible tragedy doesn’t happen to another family.
The Daily Mail reports that Larry and Keri Volmert were sleeping downstairs when their 17-month-old daughter, Sammie Volmert, died in her bedroom on the second story of the family’s home. The parents say there was no indication that anything was wrong until they woke up the next morning and went upstairs to retrieve their sleeping child. As Larry made his way up the stairs, he says the temperature seemed to be getting hotter and hotter. He entered his daughter’s bedroom to find that she had passed way in the night as temperatures in the room reached 100 degrees, causing the toddler’s internal body temperature to spike.
“As soon as I got to the top of the stairs, it was very warm – I mean, hot. I ran to her room, opened her door, and found her passed away.”
Keri Volmert says that everything seemed normal when she laid her daughter down for bed. She says during the night there was no indication that anything may be going wrong upstairs and that she never heard her daughter cry. The couple’s bedroom was downstairs where the HVAC unit was working properly; therefore, the temperature downstairs remained constant as the temperatures spiked upstairs despite being set at a cool 72 degrees. With no indication that there was a problem upstairs, the Volmerts slept through the night as usual and woke in the morning to retrieve their daughter from her bedroom.
However, Larry says that he knew something was wrong upstairs when he started up the flight of stairs to his daughter’s bedroom. He says the temperature continued to rise until it was “hot.” He entered 17-month-old Sammie Volmert’s room to find that she had passed away in her sleep. The Volmerts attempted to perform CPR on Sammie but it was too late. The child had died from hyperthermia in her sleep as her body could not compensate for the steadily spiking temperatures.
Now the family is warning other parents with two-story homes to install a baby monitor with a temperature monitor, something they say they had never heard of prior to the tragic death of their daughter.
“I want people who have two-story homes to realize the danger, because we had never heard of this.”
Keri Volmert is now encouraging all families with two-story homes to purchase a baby monitor with a temperature monitor. Keri says that prior to her family’s tragedy, she had never heard of a child dying from a malfunctioning HVAC unit. However, following her daughter’s death, Keri says a number of families have reached out to her to express their sympathy and detail similar tragedies of their own.
The Volmert family is pursuing legal action against the HVAC unit manufacturer but says that they realize nothing will bring their daughter back to them. However, they hope that they can keep a similar tragedy from happening to another family.
Did you know that homes with two HVAC units could pose as a danger to a child sleeping upstairs? Have you heard of baby monitors with temperature monitors?
[Image via Facebook/ Remembering Sammie Vomert]