PLANT CITY — A 2-year-old boy was run over and fatally injured by an SUV driven by his mother on Tuesday, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office.
The incident took place at about 5 p.m. on a private road near the 3900 block of State Road 60.
The boy’s mother and grandmother were testing an SUV that had mechanical issues in their yard on the private road when the boy was struck, said sheriff’s spokeswoman Crystal Clark in a news conference televised by WFLA-Ch. 8.
The vehicle started to stall. The mother put in reverse, hit a piece of wood, drove forward and then reversed again, Clark said.
Then they saw their dog running in the yard — which they knew meant that the boy could have gotten out of the house, too. They looked around the vehicle and saw the boy was lying on the ground in front of the SUV.
The child was flown to Tampa General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
“It’s absolutely a tragic accident,” Clark said. “This is something where we just always try to drill home to families that you have to be extremely cautious whenever you have children that are out in the yard when your vehicles are running. We always ask that you make sure before you get in your vehicle and start your car that you check around your vehicle to make sure that no children and pets are there.”
No one involved in the incident was named by the agency.
An investigation is ongoing. No charges have not been filed as of yet, according to the Sheriff’s Office.