Monday, July 26, 2010

Protect Children

As I write this, the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office is conducting a search, aided by more than 50 people. The subject of the search is a 2-year-old boy who was camping with his family. He was last seen inside a tent while sleeping with family members. Sometime around 1:45 in the morning, he went missing from his sleeping bag.

I don't have all the details yet, so I can't say for certain what precautions were taken to keep the child from wandering away in the night. But I suspect that the bug screen across the entrance to the tent might not have been zipped securely. Arizona is hot, and the family might have left the screen open to allow better airflow. If that's the case, it also would make it easier for a child to get out of the tent.

Parents with young children might want to reconsider their camping habits to improve the security of the youngsters. That might begin with always zipping the tent doors at night. Being a bit uncomfortable is worth it, if it will prevent a tragedy.

Sailors at sea routinely wear a harness and tether arrangement to keep from being lost overboard, and I can see how a lightweight version of this type of thing might be useful for keeping a young child from wandering away unnoticed.

Just an idea, and I welcome comments and suggestions that can be passed along in this blog.

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