Incredibly a 2 ½ year old was left unattended in a Delray Beach day care center van for nearly 6 hours resulting in her very untimely demise. The driver has been charged with negligent manslaughter and the owners have lost their license and more than $200,000 in State dollars have been pulled from the day care center.
This incident has brought a call for some form of alarm system to sound inside these day care center vans that would prompt the driver to inspect all the seats of a day care vehicle before leaving; and various states are introducing bills carrying large fines as well as significant prison sentences for leaving children unattended in day care vehicles. A Tennessee law requires safety alarms in day care vans.
These types of incidents should also question the type of individuals who are permitted to care for and transport infants in these situations. Quite frankly, while it may be inconceivable to most individuals that someone could be so absent minded and careless as to forget the whereabouts of a minor child for more than 6 hours, it obviously occurs with a pathetically significant reoccurrence. How a particular day care center can lack the systems and follow through to lose the whereabouts of an infant for hours is beyond compression.
In Florida the Department of Children and families (DCF) should be monitoring and inspecting day care centers to determine the fitness of those caring for our minor children. A Bill will be sponsored next spring in the Florida Legislator requiring the day care van alarms in Florida and will be named in honor of Haile Brockington.