How Did Toddler Survive Hanging Upside Down After Crash Into River?
UPDATE: Lily Groesbeck has been released from the hospital. Watch a video of the toddler and her dad, here.
Incredible new details emerged yesterday about what brought rescuers to a toddler trapped in a car in a frigid river.
18-month-old Lily Groesbeck was found alive in the overturned car after a crash in which the vehicle plunged into the freezing river in Spanish Fork, Utah.
It was not until 14 hours after the crash that a fisherman stumbled upon the car and alerted emergency personnel.
The improbable story of survival got even more amazing when multiple police officers reported hearing cries for help when they arrived on the scene.
The toddler's mother, Lynn Groesbeck, 25, had died in the crash, so the officers could not explain who was calling out to them.
Lily, who was unconscious when rescuers got to her, has made an "astounding" recovery in the last few days, according to her family.
“Her improvement is astounding. Right now she’s watching ‘Dora (the Explorer)’ and singing ‘(The) Wheels on the Bus’ with Grandpa. She is smiling and laughing for family members. We’re blown away by Lily’s progress and so grateful to her rescuers,” the family said.
So how did Lily survive hanging upside down for 14 hours inside the car in near-freezing temperatures? The car was partially submerged, but the water never reached the little girl.
Dr. Mark Zonfrillo, a pediatric emergency surgeon, said on "Fox and Friends" that parents should see this as an example of how important it is for your child's car seat to be properly secured.
"Her mother took the time to ensure that the car seat was properly secured to the vehicle and that Lily was properly secured in the harness in the seat," he said.
Zonfrillo said "although it was very cold that evening, down to 42 degrees Fahrenheit, she was probably able to slow down her body's metabolism and just shunt all the energy to her vital organs in order to increase her chances of survival."
Watch the interview above.
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