A 4-year-old girl was killed in a traffic wreck Monday afternoon when the driver of a vehicle lost control, traveled downhill and crashed into a tree, according to Kansas City police.
The crash was reported just after 1 p.m. at Northeast Parvin and Russell roads at the Colonial Square Homes apartment complex in Kansas City, North. The child was was partially ejected from the vehicle and was unresponsive when emergency crews arrived.
“I wish I didn’t have to look at her, because it crushed my heart,” said Aktar Doulat, a resident of the complex whose apartment sits feet from the crash. “That memory will never go away.”
Doulat said that, immediately after the crash, many neighbors from the complex gathered and tried to help.
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“All of the neighbors, they were out, praying and talking. Guys were around the baby trying to see if she would respond.”
The girl was taken to a hospital and pronounced dead, according to preliminary police reports.
The child’s name has not been released. Police had earlier said the child was 7 years old.
Police said the girl was a passenger in an SUV that was eastbound when the driver passed a van on the left. The SUV sideswiped the van and the SUV driver lost control. The SUV traveled off the road, struck several trees and overturned.
The driver of the SUV, a 53-year-old Kansas City man, was taken to a hospital where he is listed in serious but stable condition, police said.
The driver of the van was not injured.
Doulat and other neighbors expressed frustration at the open nature of the roadway overlooking the complex. Many neighbors have said a barrier such as a guardrail should be erected to prevent cars from crashing down the hill beside the road.
One neighbor said this was not the first time a car had lost control on the road above and slid down the hill. The neighbor said a woman had recently considered moving into a bedroom near the bottom of the hill but decided not to because of the possibility of such a wreck.
The cause of Monday’s crash is under investigation. Police have not said if the child and the driver wore seat belts.