Boy dies after gate falls on him near Whittier

WHITTIER — A 3-year-old boy died at the hospital after a heavy wrought iron fence fell on him, authorities said.
The incident occurred about 5 p.m. at a house in the 11700 block of Fidel Avenue, in an unincorporated county area near Whittier, Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. John Gannon said. “It appears to be a freak accident,” he said.
The toddler and 5-year-old child were playing in the fenced-in front yard while their mother was in the shower, the lieutenant said.
It was not clear Friday what caused the gate to fall, Gannon said. The child was believed to have been pulling on it, but it was not clear if the gate was previously damaged.
The gate was about 5 feet tall and 20 feet wide and “very heavy,” Los Angeles County Fire Department Capt. Clint Kaller said.
The young boy was pinned underneath when rescuers arrived, officials said. It took two deputies to pull the gate off him.
He suffered a large cut to the top of his head and was unconscious when he was flown by helicopter to Childrens Hospital Los Angeles, Kaller said.
He died a short time later, Gannon said.
Detectives from the Sheriff’s Homicide Bureau were summoned to investigate and determined the incident was a tragic accident with no signs of a crime, he said.
A safety device on the upper rail of the sliding gate was not in place, he added.
“This certainly underscores the importance of keeping an eye on young children,” Gannon said.

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