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    Unhappy Sad Safety Reminder

    Boy Dies In Microwave During Hide-And-Seek 6-Year-Old Suffocated During Game

    POSTED: 7:18 am EDT July 18, 2007

    PLATTSMOUTH, Neb. -- Police in Nebraska said a 6-year-old boy is dead after hiding in an old microwave oven during a game.

    Plattsmouth Police Chief Brian Paulsen said that James Cook, 6, died Monday night while playing a game of hide-and-seek with his 9-year-old sister. The boy crawled into an old microwave and suffocated to death when he couldn't get out, the chief said.

    Cook's family members told Omaha, Neb., TV station KETV that they had piled a pickup truck full of items they planned to take to the dump on Saturday. They said they still can't believe the child is gone. His uncle described James as "a playful little boy."

    The family had the truck and the items hauled away Tuesday, saying they couldn't bear to see the microwave sitting in the driveway.

    The child had been missing for 2Ĺ hours before he was found, and family members were searching, police said. Police said he had been missing about an hour in 91-degree heat when his sister told her family that she couldn't find her brother.

    Childcare experts said word of the child's death hits home.

    "It's a teaching moment for us as parents," said Judy Kay, a social worker with Omaha's Child Saving Institute.

    Kay said all parents feel a sort of secondary trauma when they hear about cases like the Plattsmouth boy. She said the incident is a reminder for parents to talk with kids about never climbing into appliances.

    The microwave was in the back of a pickup truck. The family told officers that they had replaced it with a new one and were in the process of throwing out the older model.

    Investigators said the dimensions of the older, Sharp brand microwave were 15 inches wide by 10 inches high by 12 inches deep.

    "The microwave itself was on its back door -- up," Paulsen said. "It wasn't spring-loaded, as today's model are. They've made some good improvements unfortunately this didn't have any of those, and he wasn't able to escape."

    Police said the boy was 44 inches tall and 45 pounds, which is within normal pediatric growth standards.

    Distributed by Internet Broadcasting.
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    That's terrible I mean, you know to remove the doors off of refrigerators and stuff, but you never think to take them off of microwaves.

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