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1-year-old girl killed after father backs car over her

40 Comments

A one-year-old girl died Tuesday after her father ran over her while he was backing his car out of the driveway of their home in Funabashi City, Chiba Prefecture.

According to police, the accident occurred at approximately 11 a.m. Motonori Suzuki, 39, told police he was backing his car out when he hit his daughter Maki. The girl, who had been standing behind the car, hit her head on the pavement. She was pronounced dead later in hospital. Police said that Suzuki broke down in tears as he admitted that he had been completely unaware of his daughter's presence behind the car.

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40 Comments
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Again?! Wasn't there a similar case just recently? Oh dear dear. How sad. The basics of driving just go by the wayside...

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sad...tragic and sad I cannot imagine!

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"1-year-old girl killed after father backs car over her"

Ouch!

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how tragic. i wonder how the father is coping with the accident. reminds me of my friend who ran over his 3 newly-born puppies who have been sleeping under the car.

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Are Japanese 1 year olds able to walk around and hang out in drive ways???? Most 1 year olds I know have only begun to stand up while hanging on to something. 1 is a small number but something doesn't add up.

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maybe 1 year and 11 months old ..

.. however yeah this is tragic .. I couldn't imagine the pain the father is going through now

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this will be hell on earth for this guy. i cant even imagine the pain....

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Here we go again.... Didn't we just read about a girl in a parking lot not 3 weeks ago...?

If you have kids, you better know where they are at all times... If that means, taking 3 extra minutes to grab your little girl/boy by the hand and bring into the house with mom or grandma, then that's what needs to happen..

These back over your own kid accidents are 100% preventable, and there's no excuse!

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How awful, poor babe and poor parents.

This seems to happen an awful lot in the UK for some reason, often a child will sneak out while the door's open and by the time someone realises they're not where they should be it's too late.

Cars are always going to be dangerous, especially to children. And children are always good at suddenly darting off into dangerous places.

As for whether 1 year olds are able to hang out on driveways, probably yes. But not normally when someone's driving the car in or out. Driveways are normally considered part of the garden/yard and thus part of the play area when a car isn't being moved. Not surprising children don't understand the danger. They play on the drive, around the car if it's there, and they ride happily in the car. Therefore the car is a friend and how can it be dangerous?

Poor baby.

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However, sad this is, I hope the cops were quick to arrest this chap and charge him with verhicular manslaughter. Depending on who else was around, the cops might also be able to get a charge against his wife (the former mother) for reckless endangerment of a child, seeing as neither of these two rocket scientists saw fit to confirm the whereabouts of the child before backing out the car.

PS. I invite anyone reading this comment to pop over to the discussion regarding "parental supervision" or lack thereof.

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This is why I have a back-camera at my wagon-style car. The standard mirrors don't give enough information when going backwards.

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I've a 19 month old, he started walking at just 8 months. kids are all different! This is a real tragic accident and not so much as a result of bad driving standards, poor supervision perhaps. I feel very sorry for the father he has to bear this for the rest of his life! Rest in peace little one.

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Awful awful awful... this does not seem like the father's fault to me at all unless he was watching the Giants game on the car navigation instead of paying attention, or unless he was responsible for watching the child in the first place.

More details are necessary: did the father take the child out of the car and put her near the driveway? Wasn't somebody supposed to be watching the wee girl?

Either way, the result is the same -- a poor young girl is dead. RIP.

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Sad case again, feel sorry for the parents...especially the father. Still there needs to be a mindset of, I have a small child, let me double, triple check he/she is inside the house or strapped in the car seat safely. This was avoidable, but was still an accident that he will keep with him for the rest of his life.

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I cannot imagine the state of the father of this child. I would not survive a tragedy like this.

If incidents such as these are reported often in Jland, then parents must start paying more attention. People can get easily bogged down with their jobs, life's all other problems and forget the most important things. Just the other day, I saw a mother with 2 kids seated on the bench in the subway. She had loads of things to carry and was carrying the toddler. The older child seemed bored and started playing with the toddler.Suddenly I found him inserting his finger into the toddlers nose. I quickly brought this to the attention of the mother and the rest you know...

In similar situations some of my Japanese friends have told me that I should not look and that it is none of my business. If the little boy had done some serious damage to the toddler,what is the attitude that I should have? I do not belong to a good smaraitans club, but just being a normal human being.

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These back over your own kid accidents are 100% preventable, and there's no excuse!

Yeah, kind of. Sadly, this kind of accident happens regularly and not just in Japan. Its impossible to imagine the grief the father feels.

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In many Japanese houses, the driveway is right at the entrance or tucked under the second floor. So it could be a place where the child was accustomed to play. But very sad indeed.

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It's a pandemic!

Toddler run over in driveway June 17, 2009 - 1:30PM

A one-year-old boy is in a critical condition with severe head injuries after he was run over in the driveway of a neighbour's house in Sydney's north-west this morning.

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This is horrible! where was the other parent (mother)? A 1 year old unsupervised is a tragedy waiting to happen. WATCH YOUR CHILDREN.

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One more comment.

backing his car out of the driveway. Safer generally to back in and drive out, way I was taught!

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This is so very sad. My heart goes out to the family.

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Very sorry for this incident. Poor father.

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It does happen in other countries too!

Toddler dies after driveway tragedy

June 17, 2009 - 3:25PM

A one-year-old boy hit by a reversing car in a northwest Sydney driveway has died in hospital.

The boy was hit by a ute which was reversing down the driveway at Gladstone Parade, Riverstone at 10am (AEST) today and suffered severe head injuries.

Moderator: We know such accidents in other countries. That is not relevant to this discussion.

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what in the h*** is the 1yr old doing out there in the first place!!!?!?!??!!??!

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I actually think this kind of accident happens less in Japan as not everyone has a car and most cars are parked away from the home.

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That poor little girl, and her father; this guilt is going to wrack him the rest of his days. This is so sadly tragic. As for this...comment:

However, sad this is, I hope the cops were quick to arrest this chap and charge him with verhicular manslaughter. Depending on who else was around, the cops might also be able to get a charge against his wife (the former mother) for reckless endangerment of a child, seeing as neither of these two rocket scientists saw fit to confirm the whereabouts of the child before backing out the car.

What an utterly stupid and assinine thing to say.

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Another case of "PAY ATTENTION."

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What an utterly stupid and assinine thing to say.

Why is this so? The child is dead. Her death is the result of negligence on the part of either one or both parents. You can not blame this on the child. Too young and it would not stand up in a court of law. The death could have been avoided if the parents had simply checked to confirm their whereabouts.

Don't get me wrong, this is a very sad event, and it is something that the father will carry with him for the rest of his life (the strain of this event might also impact the marriage). However, all such considerations are purely emotional. From a legal point of view, this this sad outcome is the result of negligence on the part of the parents and it is something that should be addressed.

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timorborder do you have children???

We don't know all the details of the accident - all the circumstances. Unless we are fully in possession of the facts we cant go off half cocked lot a large majority of JT "high horse" posters seemingly love to do. The man said he was completely unaware and he probably was, the kid was probably supposed to be inside and snuck out. The mother could have been in the toilet or cooking and thought the child was in her playpen - you can not keep your eye an a child 100% of the time - that's why you secure them in inescapable places like play pens. Little Maki could have escaped and it only takes a second. On the other hand Perhaps her mother was an inattentive keitai mum who just wasnt looking nor paying enough attention and the kid easily got outside to her doom.

What if the father had backed over the neighbours kid who sprang out of nowhere when he was backing out? The poor bloke is in a 'catch 22' and royally screwed in any case.

Life is cruel, you take as many precautions as you can but sometimes shit happens.

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Yes Flammenwerfer I have two kids, despite a couple of sporting injuries and dog bites, both are in the same condition as when god delivered them (no I am not a religious nut). Moreover, neiither of them has had the opportunity to see the bottom of a car.

In someways I am playing devil's advocate, however, ignorance is no defense in this instance. The guy (and possibilly his wife) were negiglent to the point where somebody was killed (their child). I believe that the matter of their grief does not negate their responsibilities in the eyes of the law. I might be cold-hearted (and then some), but just letting this case rest (and the parents go) does not seem right.

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I agree that they may have been negligent, or at best clueless, but I think reading the reaction of the father to the incident that punishing them in the eyes ofthe law will not be nearly as harsh as the punishment I think they are going to inflict on themselves for the rest of their lives. they obviously loved this kid, and this seems to be a case of negligence, rather than genuine neglect. A moments negligence is all it takes, sadly.

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It could happen to any family in any country, but definitely the least thing I want to discuss because it's so awful, painful, and tragic. Poor baby. . .

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As stated earlier, a 1-year-old can be very mobile and it only takes a second of inattention for the child to end up where they shouldn't. While in hindsight it is easy to blame the parents, it is also completely understandable how this can happen. RIP little one.

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Making accusations at this guy in pointless until we get some more information. I don't think anyone has any right to go proclaiming how he should be punished without being in full possesion of the facts.

There could be all sorts of reasons, but the only one that I will confidently is that small houses with tiny driveways barely big enough for a car only increase the risk. And as for backing in to the driveway; extremely hard in the narrow streets around my home. Those are so narrow they actually require one to drive up onto the so-called sidewalk to allow traffic coming towards you to pass. I can't imagine most of my neighbors managing to reverse park.

I must say though, pretty hard for a 1 year old to get around. Shouldn't be that hard for Mum to keep her safe. How on earth did she get out?

There's a world of difference between 1 and 1 and 11 months, though... Just how mobile was this kid?

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Womanforwoman: You did exactly the right thing in telling to the mother.

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Very sad indeed.

It's not only children that this can happen to - we had a case at work a few months ago where a man managed to reverse over his adult daughter while backing out of his drive. She survived, but she was in hospital for ages....

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very sad indeed. not to make light of her traggic death, but I think this unlocks one of the greatest Japanese mysteries ever. Why so many japanese back into their parking spaces. So they dont have to BACK out unawared of everything but themselves and the TV show they are watching from their dashboard.

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Dear timorborder, I can't imagine how your kid(s) got themselves into a situation where they got bitten by a dog. Could it have been pure accident? Devil's advocate :-)

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poor parents it's not a crime its a tragedy, even if the parents were fully responsible

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Safety is not on the top of Japanese peoples list I have noted. Kids running around in car parks, riding bikes late at night without lights when they should actually be in bed for the night and the most insane thing grown adults do is stand directly behind a backing car to tell the driver when to stop. Squish, oops, sorry is a real possiblilty.

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