A 7-month old baby boy was abandoned on a balcony by his mom for five hours, with temperatures outside dropping down to sub-zero levels. According to Russian authorities, the mother forgot her child was outside, and because of this mistake, the infant froze to death. The Russian media reports, the tragic event took place in Nikolaevsk-on-Amur, Russia. Police say that the mom decided to allow her son to take a nap outside to get some fresh air but then forgot to go back to check on him while staying nice and warm indoors as temperatures outside plummeted for the next five hours.
The incident took place on an especially brutal winter day in Russia as temperatures reached as low as -4 degrees Fahrenheit on that day. The baby’s official cause of death was hypothermia, a condition that occurs when the body loses heat faster than it can produce it. Once a person’s temperature falls below a certain level, many vital functions cease. The practice of leaving children outside to nap in the winter is fairly common in that region, as many parents feel that it helps children avoid illnesses. However, several outlets report public outrage over this incident as many parents condemn the parent for her fatal irresponsible mistake.
Meanwhile, Russian health officials warn parents never to leave their children outside unattended, according to Fox News.
“Always know where and with whom [your child] is,” the ministry issued a warning in an Instagram post, adding, “Do not pass by if another child is in danger — in winter a child who is lost or injured on the street can very quickly become a victim of low temperatures.”
It’s heartbreaking to think about how this tragedy could have been avoided. You can also watch a video below with more on this story.