One moment, Chad “Cheddar” Mock was preparing to round a curve on a busy street in Mankato, Minn. The next, he found himself sprinting into traffic, trying to rescue a child in a car seat who had tumbled into the path of his truck.
“If it didnt happen in front of me i’d never have believed it,” Mock wrote on Facebook, adding the angry emoji. “The child was ok. the parents came back. paramedics and police checked the child out as well.
"Very lucky,” he added. Mock did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment.
The incident was caught on Mock’s dashboard camera just before noon Monday on Minnesota Street in Mankato, about 90 miles southwest of Minneapolis.
In the video, a silver car in front of Mock’s truck speeds into a curve near a Hy-Vee grocery store, then brakes. The rear door on the driver’s side flies open, and the child — a 2-year-old strapped into a car seat, wearing a pink overcoat and a confused expression — comes tumbling out.
The girl sits there as Mock stops his truck and gets out, waving his arms to try to attract the attention of the driver. But the driver apparently doesn’t see the wildly gesticulating man and drives off as the door is closed by the car’s movement.
Mock runs and picks up the girl as other drivers stop and get out of their cars.
The save was reminiscent of a recent incident in Milwaukee in which a bus driver rescued an unattended toddler she spotted walking across a highway overpass. The toddler was cold to the touch when the driver brought the child onto the bus, according to Reuters. The child’s mother reportedly was suffering from a mental health crisis.
The Mankato Public Safety Department said in a news release that the toddler who fell into the road Monday was securely belted into the child safety seat but that the seat and the car door weren’t particularly secure — both of which were made abundantly clear by Mock’s video.
Officers and paramedics who arrived a little later confirmed that the toddler was uninjured. Authorities haven’t identified the child’s mother but said they are seeking to charge her with child endangerment and with not properly restraining a small child in a vehicle.
Officers did not release the woman’s name or say why she didn’t notice that her child had fallen out of the car.