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Woman Smashes Window to Save Toddler Left in Blazing Hot Car

A woman in Merrian, Kan., is a hero after rescuing a toddler over the weekend who was left alone in a car on a hot day in a strip mall parking lot.

Sarah Oropeza used a tire iron to smash the car window open and save the two-year-old girl. Temperatures had soared to 91 degrees, with humidity making it feel like it was more than 100 degrees.

Oropeza says instinct took over in the moment:

I just kept thinking, ‘If I don’t open this window, this baby is going to die. You need to open this window.’ I just kept telling myself, ‘Don’t stop. She’s going to die.’”

Oropeza said this was definitely a matter of life and death. “The windows were totally rolled up, all the doors were locked,” she said. “She was covered in sweat. When I looked in the back window, she was covered in sweat. She had pulled her hair back and sweat was just dripping.”

A witness recorded the incident, the latest example of the dangers of leaving a child in a hot car. After the baby was removed from the car, she was taken inside a store where wet socks were applied to her while police were summoned.

Authorities say the girl was left in the carby her father’s sister and cousin and while they went shopping. Officials are mulling whether or not to file charges. They have already received a ticket for child endangerment.

Oropeza, meanwhile, was stunned when the cousin and sister asked to get the girl back. “No emotion at all, whatsoever,” she said. “The only question they had for police was if insurance was going to pay to cover the window that we broke.”

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