On a clear day in the Northland town of Maungaturoto in New Zealand, five-year-old boy Tahu was outside playing when a milk tanker crushes him to death
On a clear day in the Northland town of Maungaturoto in New Zealand, five-year-old boy Tahu was outside playing. He was merely a hundred meters from his house, so what could possibly go wrong?
Unfortunately, there were a lot.
Young Tahu was riding his pushbike when he fell on the footpath. Unbeknownst to him, a massive milk tanker was fast approaching. Before Tahu could jump out of the way, the vehicle’s wheels were on him. Tahu was crushed to death.
He died on a Friday, and by Sunday, hand-picked flowers lay on the site on which he died, from neighbors who remembered him as a “fun and happy child”.
The managing director of global operations, Robert Spurway, of the dairy company for which the driver works has isseud a statement saying, “This is a terribly tragic accident and our thoughts are with the child’s family and loved ones”.
He also said that the company was now working with police and supporting the driver and local community after the tragic accident.
Parents, when was the last time you stopped to consider not only the place at which your kids are playing, but also its surrounding areas? Can strangers easily access it? Is it a high-traffic location? What are other threats that lurk just around the corner?
Never too safe
Keep in mind some of University of Michigan’s pointers to make sure that every time your child is playing outside, they are being safe:
- Keep babies under 6 months old out of direct sunlight. They should not use sunscreen unless recommended by their doctor.
- Dress your baby in lightweight clothing that covers their body. Use wide brimmed hats to protect your baby’s head and shade their face.
- Make sure surfaces around playground equipment have at least 12 inches of wood chips, mulch, sand, or pea gravel, or are mats made of safety-tested rubber or rubber-like materials.
- Make sure spaces that could trap children, such as openings in guardrails or between ladder rungs, measure less than 3.5 inches or more than 9 inches.
- Check for sharp points or edges in equipment. Look out for tripping hazards, like exposed concrete footings, tree stumps, and rocks.
*Above image only a visual representation
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