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Girl, one, dies after falling off a playground fort at her 1st birthday party


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Girl, one, dies on her first birthday after falling off play equipment while her mother mowed the lawn just out of eyesight

  • Savanah Halcrow died from traumatic head injuries after falling from a play set
  • Savanah was on the play set at a New Zealand play centre prior to her birthday
  • Her mother was setting up the venue when Savanah fell from a wooden bridge
  • She suffered bleeding on the brain and died a few days later on her first birthday 

A little girl died on her first birthday after tragically falling from play equipment and suffering massive head injuries.

Savanah May Halcrow, 1, was playing on the equipment just days before her birthday party was due to be held at the Glenmark Playcentre in Waipara, New Zealand, when she fatally fell.

Her mother Sandra Laurie was nearby preparing the area for the party, when the accident happened on January 14, 2018.  

As a co-op play centre parents, carers and family are required to maintain the centre and Mrs Laurie had gone there a few days before the event to prepare. 

New Zealand girl Savanah Halcrow, 1, died after she fell from a playground (pictured) as her mother helped prepare the centre for her upcoming first birthday

While mowing the lawn outside, Mrs Laurie allowed Savanah to play on a fort which had three connective bridges including a hanging swing bridge. 

Mrs Laurie supervised her daughter and saw she was having no trouble on the large play set, the New Zealand Herald reported. 

However when she went to put the lawn mower away and Savanah was ‘out of her sight momentarily’ she returned to find her screaming on the ground. 

Coroner Sue Johnson explained in her findings Savanah died after falling from the hanging swing bridge onto the bark chips below, causing severe brain injuries. 

‘She went to pick her up and Savanah started shaking, becoming floppy and unresponsive,’ Coroner Johnson said.

Mrs Laurie rushed across the road to the nearest house where the resident happened to be a nurse. 

The nurse drove the mother and daughter to the Amberley Medical Centre where it was discovered Savanah had suffered a brain bleed which was creating pressure in her skull. 

Emergency surgery was performed on the toddler but when her condition failed to improve she was transferred to the Starship Children’s Hospital in Auckland on January 15. 

Savanah suffered catastrophic head injuries after she fell from the play set and was rushed to hospital. She fought for days before she succumbed to her injuries on her first birthday (stock image)

Savanah suffered catastrophic head injuries after she fell from the play set and was rushed to hospital. She fought for days before she succumbed to her injuries on her first birthday (stock image)

Coroner Johnson said Savanah showed no signs of regaining consciousness and her pupils were ‘fixed and dilated’. 

Her condition did not improve over the following four days and she wasn’t responding to treatment.  

A decision was made by doctors and Savanah’s mother to focus care on her comfort and her artificial ventilation was switched off at 4.20pm.

Savanah died that same day, her first birthday, at 10.26pm. 

After the tragic death the Ministry of Education conducted a licencing assessment of the play centre with damning results. 

They concluded the bark chip depth was not safe or sufficient enough for a play area and the swing bridge was dangerous. 

‘The hanging swing bridge including the set up with the horizontal guard rails was assessed as not safe and not suitable for its intended use,’ Coroner Johnson said. 

The play centre’s license was immediately suspended until it was brought up to regulation. 

Coroner Johnson said bringing the centre up to regulation was needed but by no means a guarantee of a child’s safety. 

She also concluded the fall could have been avoided. 

‘In this case the bark might not have provided the required impact absorbing protection to cushion Savanah’s fall. But Savanah’s fall would have been more likely not to have occurred in the first place if her mother had been watching her children,’ she said. 

She described the death as a ‘heart rending and absolutely tragic’ incident for the entire family.  

A evaluation of the play set by the Ministry of Education concluded both the bark chip on the ground and the bridge where Savanah fell were no safe and the centre was closed until it met regulation (stock image)

A evaluation of the play set by the Ministry of Education concluded both the bark chip on the ground and the bridge where Savanah fell were no safe and the centre was closed until it met regulation (stock image)

 

 

 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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