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Toddler Falls Through Hole In Car Floorboard

April 6, 1988

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) _ A 23-month-old boy escaped serious injury when he fell through a hole in the floor of a car, which then drove on without him, police said.

The child apparently reached down to get a potato chip and slipped through a hole in the back seat floor of the 1977 Chevrolet, police said after the incident Tuesday.

The car’s driver and the boy’s 16-year-old mother, a passenger in the car, apparently didn’t realize the child was missing until the car reached a stoplight, said Police Officer Louis Redpath.

The driver, Debra Alwerdt, 26, of Springfield, was ticketed for having an unsafe vehicle, police said.

The hole, which had been covered by a mat, ″is big enough for a small adult to go through,″ he said. ″We’re just lucky the wheels didn’t get him.″

Authorities believe the car may have been stopped in traffic when the child fell, police spokesman Neil Williamson said Wednesday.

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