Teen with special needs left in hot car during Abbotsford Airshow

Temperatures reached 27 degrees during incident on Sunday

While spectators were enjoying the Abbotsford Airshow on the weekend

Kielah Tocheniuk and a co-worker were packing up items from the booth they manned at the Abbotsford Airshow on Sunday when some movement caught their eye in the car next to them.

A girl was in the backseat, and she appeared to be struggling. The vehicle was not running and a window was open only about two inches in the 27 degree afternoon heat.

Tocheniuk moved closer and noticed that the girl was sweating profusely. Tocheniuk began talking to her, and it soon became apparent that the girl was developmentally delayed and couldn’t speak.

She was buckled in to her seatbelt, the doors were locked, and she didn’t know how to get out. She was trying to squeeze her hand through the crack in the window to indicate that she wanted out.

Tocheniuk was distraught. She and her co-worker had been loading the vehicle for 30 minutes and nobody had come to check on the girl.

Tocheniuk considered breaking a window but a police officer was nearby, and she notified him and some on-site St. John Ambulance paramedics of the situation.

The officer tried to communicate with the girl and, as he was radioing for permission to break a window, her parents returned to the vehicle and unlocked it. By this time, another 15 minutes had passed from when Tocheniuk first noticed the girl.

The parents said they had left their 15-year-old daughter in the car because she is sensitive to the noises from the airshow.

The frustrated officer explained the severity of the situation to them, and the St. John Ambulance volunteers determined that the teen was dehydrated and suffering from heat exhaustion.

Tocheniuk then left the scene, but speaking to The News two days later, she said she is still angry about what she observed.

“It was really upsetting … I definitely had a few tears,” she said, adding that she has a brother with special needs who is also non-verbal and she can’t imagine leaving him in a vehicle, especially on a hot day.

Abbotsford Police Sgt. Judy Bird confirmed that police investigated the situation and the matter has been turned over to the Ministry of Child and Family Development for further assessment.

The ministry does not provide information on specific cases and their outcomes.

 

 

Just Posted

PHOTOS: Seabird College celebrates graduates

Family, friends gather for ceremony Thursday night

Missing Chilliwack teen found ‘safe and sound’

Boy found just as mother was organizing search

UPDATE: Chilliwack mother issues plea for info on missing son

Informal search party organized for 13-year-old boy not seen since Thursday

Rainfall warning issued across Lower Mainland into the weekend

50 to 70 mm of rain expected to fall starting overnight Friday and into Sunday morning

Chilliwack man sentenced to four years for sexually assaulting teen brothers in the 1980s

Don Putt first caught by vigilante group Creep Catchers in 2016 leading to historical charges

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Dorsett has 2 goals, assist in Canucks’ 4-2 win over Sabres

‘It was a real good hockey game by our group,’ Canucks coach Travis Green said.

Berry disappointed: Bear tries to eat fake fruit on woman’s door wreath

A Winnipeg woman has taken her berry-embellished wreath down, after a hungry bear visited her porch

Man in custody linked police search near Salmon Arm

Police have not connected arrest to search at Salmon River Road property

Most Read