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SALT LAKE CITY — A 6-year-old boy is recovering at Primary Children’s Hospital following a 15-foot fall from a second-story window at his home, and his parents are warning others of the potential dangers.
“It’s just hard to see your baby like that, you know — there’s nothing you can do, just hope,” his mother, Holli Ohngren said. “It’s the worst thing any mom or parent could ever go through. I wouldn’t wish it on anybody.”
Ohngren said she and her husband, Steve, had told their son, Nicholas to get dressed for his sister’s birthday party Sunday afternoon, but Nicholas hadn’t come back from his room. They eventually found him outside their Idaho Falls-area house, below the boy’s open window.
“He was arching his back and his eyes were rolled up into the back of his head and he was just having lots of seizures,” Ohngren said. “I think what he was doing is he had put his hands on either side of the window, and was going to jump from the window to the bed, but he put his foot up on the screen, which kicked it out and he fell backwards.”
Steve Ohngren said Nicholas suffered significant trauma to his brain and the vertebrae in his neck, but he said that doctors at Primary Children’s now expected the boy to make a full recovery.
“He is a little miracle,” Holli Ohngren said.
The family was in the process of raising money for medical expenses. As of Thursday night, a GoFundMe account* had raised nearly $4,900 of the family’s $100,000 goal.
Nicholas Ohngren isn’t the only child to fall out of a window recently.
Earlier this month, a 3-year-old girl in Spanish Fork was critically injured in a fall out of a second-story window.
Also in the past month, a 2-year-old boy in North Ogden was injured when he fell out of a window.
The Ohngren family said they planned to take precautions to prevent any possible future accidents around windows. They noted it was possible to buy inexpensive clamps for window sills that prevent them from opening further than a couple of inches.
At Homestar Windows & Doors in Sandy, owner David Orgill said some windows come with a built-in feature that also can stop them from opening fully.
“You just pop it up like this,” he demonstrated. “The kids won’t be able to open it past that.”
In addition to clamps, he also said laying some PVC pipe down can also prevent a window from opening too far, but he said that option was less ideal since a kid could easily remove the pipe.
He also had a close call once with his child and a window.
“We had a child that almost fell out of a second-story window at 4 years old,” Orgill said. “They were goofing off, kind of got wound up, he was banging on the window and actually broke the window and almost went through, but he got hurt — he got cut pretty bad.”
A spokesperson at Primary Children’s Hospital also directed families to several safety tips on the medical center’s website.
Orgill said he hopes families will think about their children’s safety when it comes to windows.
*KSL.com does not assure that the money deposited to the account will be applied for the benefit of the persons named as beneficiaries. If you are considering a deposit to the account, you should consult your own advisors and otherwise proceed at your own risk.