Toy Machine Lures In Tennessee Toddler
The news of 18-month-old Tennessee toddler Colin Lambert getting stuck inside a toy claw machine hit particularly home for me.
As a mother to a tiny toddler myself, I know how quick these little guys can be and how, in a blink of an eye, they can go from quietly playing with a favorite toy to, say, dancing on the dining room table.
Or getting stuck inside a toy claw machine.
On Tuesday, grandmother Diane O'Neill looked away for a moment to check a quick text message on her phone. She didn't hear the sound of her grandson hauling himself into the toy machine, but when she looked up, she saw him disappearing behind the door.
"All I could see was his feet. He had already crawled in," O'Neill told WBIR reporters. "I grabbed his feet and tried to pull him back out, and he kicked my hand and got in. He went in, climbed up on the shelf and then he climbed over the glass partition and played with the toys."
Once he made it to the toys, O'Neill was worried about the dangers inside the machine.
"My biggest fear was that he was going to climb back over and try to get back out," she said. "The plastic they had that held the toys in is cracked and broken in several places. I was afraid he was going to try to climb over and get hurt."
Plus, there's that big metal claw.
She quickly called the police, and Maryville firefighters showed up at the laundromat to rescue the toddler.
The firefighters let him keep a toy.
When O'Neill told her daughter what happened, Colin's mom was good-natured about the news once she learned her son was OK.
“She shows me the picture and my husband and I start laughing because we’re not surprised. It was a matter of time he did something like this I figured.”
Apparently, this sort of thing happens all the time.
In April of 2014, a Nebraska toddler was found in a bowling alley claw machine after he slipped out the front door of his apartment while his mom was using the bathroom.
And this Babble article points out just how common this scenario is with this post on 10 toddlers who got stuck in vending machines.
The next time we're around a claw machine, I'm going to be paying extra attention to my toddler.