Baby dies after eating laundry detergent packet

News12 6PM/Sunday August 18, 2013

NORTH AUGUSTA,SC. (WRDW)-- Cathryn Hardman is a mother of two and even though her oldest Patrick is now six, she can still remember when both her children were babies. Morgan just turned 2 and Hardman says she's getting the hang of eating.

"She can handle bigger pieces now and she can feed herself easier. I don't so much worry about her," said Hardman.

Even though her guard is down a bit she still takes precautions.

"I still cut small pieces for her," said the mother of two, as she sliced a peach.

The possibility of choking on food isn't the only thing that worries her.

"I don't like to buy anything that's pretty, because a child thinks that's pretty too," she told News12.

Colorful and squishy laundry pods aren't put on this mom's grocery list for one reason.

"Looks likes something that would taste good or something fun to play with," said Hardman.

And that's exactly what a 7 month old boy in Florida was thinking last week. Investigators think the baby died after eating almost two full packets. And even though Hardman is a registered ER nurse, she says she'd freak out if something similar happened to her family.

"I would still panic and have to compose myself. I would probably first call 911," said Hardman.

That's always a good bet. First call 9-1-1, but also keep poison control's number near by too.

"Do you have that number on hand," asked News12's Jorge Lopez.
"No," answered Hardman as she shook her head in disappointment.

Hardman isn't alone many are in the same boat, but having the number handy isn't the only tip-- you should also try to keep chemicals out of sight and reach.

"We would just put it under the sink. In the bathroom on the lower shelve, but now it's out of their reach," she said.

And while the child who lost his life in Fla. is closer to Hardman's daughters age--mom still keeps an eye on her oldest too.

"Even though Patrick is 6 and he's older and knows better-- if it's something new and pretty and it looks like something he would want, I still think he would mess with it," she told News12.


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