COLUMBIA, SC — A common, mostly preventable mishap with a car killed a 14-month toddler in Lee County over the weekend, according to S.C. Highway Patrol.
The little boy, Jaylen Halley, died at the scene when a family relative was backing up in the driveway and ran over him, said Lee County coroner Larry Logan.
“Never move a motor vehicle until you make sure nothing is behind you,” Logan said.
Logan said when emergency personnel are backing up their vehicles, they always have one person exit the vehicle and check what is behind them.
According to KidsAndCars, a national group that tracks child deaths in motor vehicles, “backovers” – as this kind of death or injury is known as – injure thousands of child a year and kill hundreds.
“In the U.S., 50 children are being backed over by vehicles ever week,” according to the group’s Internet site. Of these 50 children a week, two die from their injuries.
Little Jaylen’s death fit the national profile of child victims of “backovers.”
Most victims of “backovers” are between 1 and 2, and most are struck by a motor vehicle driven by a parent or relative.
In Jaylen’s case, the driver was a 17-year-old female relative, Logan said. She was driving a 1996 BMW.
Driver’s need to be aware of a “blind zone” that extends around the car when they back up or otherwise move the car, KidsAndCars says.