4-year-old hurt in 20-foot fall from Lakota East football bleachers

Updated: Oct. 16, 2019 at 9:29 AM EDT
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LIBERTY TWP., Ohio (FOX19) - A 4-year-old boy suffered a serious head injury after falling from the top of the bleachers at Lakota East High School during a youth football game Sunday, according to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office.

First responders were summoned to the school off Lakota Lane in Liberty Township just after 2 p.m.

According to an incident report, the boy was playing on a metal platform next to the press box with other children when he fell 20 feet to the ground.

The boy was laying on his back, crying, and suffered a serious head injury due to the fall, a deputy wrote in the report.

The child’s father told the deputy he looked around for his son but could not find him and then happened to look over the fence at the top of the platform and noticed his son on the ground.

It was not immediately clear how the boy fell, the report states. There were no witnesses, though several people called 911 after.

The boy was taken to West Chester Medical Center due to his head injury, the report states.

We reached out to a Lakota spokeswoman for comment. Betsy Fuller provided the following statement:

"During a Lakota Tomahawks youth football game on Sunday afternoon, we learned the saddening news that a young child was injured from a fall at the Lakota East football stadium. Unfortunately, we are unable to comment on specifics of the fall, as it occurred during an event hosted by a community organization renting our facilities.

The fencing at the top of the platform has security ties attaching it to the platform. The bleachers, which are inspected annually, have passed all safety requirements. This week, Lakota Schools has added additional security ties and is looking at other options to help prevent an accident like this from happening again.

For privacy reasons, we cannot comment on the severity of the child’s injuries or recovery. Our superintendent has been in touch with the family and our thoughts and prayers are with them as the child recovers from this very unfortunate accident. We are grateful to all the bystanders and first responders who helped get the child the help he needed."

Fuller later said the district is not aware of any previous issues with the bleachers and says they’re now changing from the standard fence ties to stainless steel zip ties. She says those ties have stronger tensile strength.

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