Child falls out of car, Opelika Police are investigating

By: Dorothy Sherman

OPELIKA, AL – A little boy has serious injuries after he fell out of a vehicle Tuesday evening, authorities said.

"For me … I can’t recall this happening before to a child this young.  This is incredibly rare," Opelika Police Cpt. Bobby Kilgore said Wednesday.

Police said authorities got a call Tuesday.

They said a five-year-old fell out of a vehicle carrying four occupants while traveling 15-20 miles per hour while at West Forrest Intermediate School.

"It appears at this time that the parent was pulling into the school to pick up an older sibling from an after school program and the five-year-old in the backseat it appears unbuckled the seat belt and got out of the car while it was still in motion and landed on the pavement," Capt. Kilgore said.

It’s still early in the investigation, but as of Wednesday Capt. Kilgore said it’s believed the five-year-old was only wearing a seatbelt.

"The child should’ve been in an approved booster seat or car seat," Capt. Kilgore said.

In Alabama, children are required to be buckled up in a certain way for safety.  Infants are supposed to be in certain car seats in the rear facing position until one year of age or 20 pounds, certain car seats facing forward until five years of age or 40 pounds, booster seats until six years of age, and seatbelts until 15.

"Please keep them in approved car seats and please pay attention to what you’re children are doing," Capt. Kilgore.

It’s possible charges could come for the driver, but none have been filed so far.

As for the child, police said he was taken to Midtown Medical Center then transferred to Egleston Hospital in Atlanta for further treatment.

His condition is currently unknown.

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