Baby dies from heat in Arizona amid 120-degree temperatures

Updated

A 4-month-old infant died after she was exposed to extreme heat while visiting Lake Havasu in Arizona with her parents.

The Mohave County Sheriff’s Office confirms to TODAY that Tanna Rae Wroblewski succumbed to a heat-related injuries on July 5, after temperaures in the area reached 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

“Detectives responded and investigation is ongoing,” agency spokesperson Anita Mortensen said in a written statement.

Tanna was taken by boat to Havasu Regional Medical Center and then airlifted to Phoenix Children’s Hospital.

"They did everything in their power to revive her, but God had other plans, and took Tanna to heaven that night," Devynn Wolf, the baby's aunt, wrote on GoFundMe.

On Facebook, Tanna’s mom, Alyssa Wroblewski, shared pictures of her late daughter grinning from ear to ear at a beach.

“These are the last photos I took of you before you left us,” Wroblewski wrote in a post dated July 8. “Your smile radiated joy ... I never thought there would be a day in my life without you.”

Wroblewski said in her post that the entire family is struggling to make sense of what happened.

“Explaining your loss to your sister has been tough. We don’t understand why you had to leave, (so) how could she?” Wroblewski wrote. “She’s left out toys for you and made sure your favorites were all in the bassinet before bed the last couple of nights. We are so heartbroken without you baby girl.”

On June 23, Wroblewski posted photos of her husband, Matthew, and their two young children on Lake Havasu, a popular vacation spot known as the “Jet Ski Capital of the World.” Tanna sits in a floating lounger with a canopy. There’s also a light blanket draped over her lap.

Dr. Laurel O’Connor, a pediatric emergency physician at UMass Memorial Center, notes that water doesn’t protect people from heat-related dangers.

“It's a very common misconception. People think, ‘Oh, I’ll go swimming — that will cool me down,’” O’Connor tells TODAY.com. “You can actually get dehydrated faster in water.”

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), babies, toddlers and small children shouldn’t be outdoors for long periods of time when the heat index is 90 degrees or higher.

O’Connor recommends avoiding the outdoors entirely during a heat wave — especially when there is a high level of humidity.

“An infant can’t talk to us and let us know that they’re too hot or that they’re feeling dizzy,” O’Connor tells TODAY.com. Babies' bodies can't regulate temperature as well as adults, she says, “which puts them more at risk for overheating.”

O’Connor notes that prolonged heat exposure can cause neurological problems, dehydration, kidney failure and death. Signs of heat stress include irritability and pale, clammy skin.

“If you notice those symptoms, things are critical and you need to cool the child down,” she explains. “That doesn't mean stick your child in an ice bath. You want to use cool, wet compresses and fans. And if they are still exhibiting signs of being unwell, you want to call 911.”

Lastly: Don't overbundle your baby and make sure they are staying hydrated with formula or breast milk.

"Breastfeeding moms need to make sure they are drinking enough water," O'Connor says. "If mom is dehydrated and not producing, then baby is going to be dehydrated, too."

This article was originally published on TODAY.com

Advertisement