(SEYMOUR) – A healthy baby girl is safe after being surrendered in the Safe Haven Baby Box at Seymour Fire Station 3 on Meadowbrook Drive on Thursday afternoon.
Seymour Fire Department personnel were notified the baby was in the box after an alarm sounded at 1:30 p.m
Seymour Fire Chief Brad Lucas said the baby was retrieved within 60 seconds from the box and taken to Schneck Medical Center for a medical evaluation.
“The system worked perfectly,” Chief Lucas said. “We had firefighters in the building, and the ambulance was on scene within minutes. The baby is doing great We are proud to have this resource available for the residents. We strive every day to ensure the safety of our residents and this is just a way to ensure the safety of newborns.”
The Safe Haven Baby Boxes are an option for parents to safely and anonymously surrender their newborn children and place the babies with authorities.
The baby boxes are equipped with a small door, a mattress, and a temperature-controlling fan. Once the child is placed in the box and the door is closed, an alarm sounds notifying authorities.
She was the first newborn to be surrendered in Seymour’s Baby Box which was dedicated in June 2019.
The box was funded by Hunter Wart, a Columbus North graduate, who raised $10,000 by mowing lawns and scrapping aluminum cans and other metal to purchase the box as part of his senior project.
The baby surrendered Thursday is the fifth baby surrendered in a baby box in the past two years in Indiana, according to the Safe Haven Baby Box’s website.
Authorities continue to urge parents to use the boxes as a way to safely surrender their newborns if they can not care for them.
“This mother loved this child and it takes a very special person to want what’s best for a child and know that it’s not her,” Kelsay said. “That’s the ultimate act of selflessness. I’m so thankful she chose a safe place to surrender her child and not a dumpster or trash can like we see too many times.”
In mid October, an infant was found alive in a plastic bag in Seymour. The baby girl was found along a fence line on South Jackson Park Drive. She was taken to the hospital for an examination, where doctors determined she was healthy.
Indiana’s Safe Haven Law allows people to take newborn babies to any hospital emergency room, police station or fire station without any questions asked and no risk of arrest or prosecution. The Safe Haven Baby Box allows anonymity with no penalty.
Lucas said there will be a news conference at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Station 3.