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Young child dies after being found in washing machine that had been switched on

A young child has reportedly died after being found in a washing machine that had been switched on.

The pre-school age child was found unresponsive in a front-loading washing machine, Stuff reports.

A spokesperson said that officers were notified of an incident in the Christchurch, New Zealand, suburb of Hoon Hay at about 5pm on Friday.

The force said: “One person was injured and taken to hospital where they later died.

“Police are making enquiries into the circumstances of the death and the coroner has been informed.”

Star News reports that chairwoman Karolyn Potter from the Waihoro/Spreydon-Cashmere Community Board said the community was resilient and would rally around the family.



File photo of a typical washing machine

Police are making enquiries after the child was found in a washing machine (file photo)

She said: “This is a sadness that’s beyond talking about.”

Spreydon ward councillor Dr Melanie Coker was also reported to have said she had only learnt about the “absolutely heartbreaking” incident after seeing media reports, but sent her condolences to the family.

It is understood the child’s death is not being treated as suspicious by police.

The potential dangers of washing machines and children have been widely reported.

According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, there have been at least three related deaths of children aged five and younger since 2014.

There have also been about 3,000 emergency room visits related to washing machines.

Non-profit group Consumer Reports say of the risks: “It’s critical that parents explain to their young children that appliances are not toys, and that they can be dangerous.

“It’s equally important to point out any potential dangers to anyone watching your children while you’re away.

“Remember that young kids are at a developmental stage that makes them especially curious.”

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