Fatal Distraction: A Baby Is Left In A Hot Car Once Every 9 Days. Here’s How You Can Stop It.

Documentarian needs your help saving children.

Dan Fugardi August 23, 2017
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Susan Morgan Cooper, the award winning documentary filmmaker, continues to juggle more than one way to save our precious children. Her most recent film, To the Moon and Back, explores the wild story of Putin’s retaliation to the Magnitsky Act and how it holds Russia’s own orphans hostage.  

We covered the travesty of the current Russian Adoption Ban in an article last week

While To the Moon and Back makes the connection between the Magnitsky Act and Russia’s Adoption Ban — it also focuses on the story that has yet to make headline news: the scapegoat Putin blamed for the ban, Miles Harrison, an American adoptive dad who accidentally left his child behind in a hot car. This phenomenon of loving, responsible American parents leaving their children behind had been happening at an alarming rate of once every 9 days. Unfortunately, this statistic continues to climb. So far this year, it has happened once every 7 days. 

“…the most likely victims are the parents who are unaware of this issue. Every parent needs to have this information”

When Susan quickly realized the critical issue of parents unknowingly killing their own children, she knew she had to do something. The public says “It can’t happen to me,” but it happens to caring parents in every walk of life.

Susan has now met with and interviewed many families that have experienced this tragedy. “I realized the most likely victims are the parents who are unaware of this issue. Every parent needs to have this information,” Susan said. 

So she is turning to the most powerful resource she knows: film.  

Fatal Distraction is a feature documentary based on the Pulitzer prize-winning article in the Washington Post of the same name. The journalist, Gene Weingarten, experienced a near-miss with his own child and set out to cover the tragic phenomena of children dying in hot cars.

The ultimate goal of the film is to pass the HOTCARS Act — a bill that requires simple technology that will alert the driver when a child or animal is left behind in a car. Without this legislation we cannot end these tragic deaths. 

This bill was introduced into Congress last month, first in the House of Representatives, then heard by the Senate several weeks later. The subject of Susan’s film, Miles Harrison, testified in front of Congress to urge our government to make this a priority. This came after Susan’s film To The Moon and Back was played at a Congressional Screening on Capitol Hill last year.

Susan is working with Janette Fennel of Kids And Cars, who is responsible for implementing numerous child safety laws related to automobiles. Changing the law is not easy, but it is possible in numbers. We are VERY close to a change that will mean the difference for the future of countless families, countless heartbreaking tragedies avoided, countless innocent children spared having to die a horrible death.

We invite you to be a part of this powerful initiative. Susan has self-funded her efforts so far and needs your support to complete Fatal Distraction, so she has created a KickStarter Campaign to do it. The community welcomes your support in all forms – donations, shares, and your voice can make a difference.

Visit the Fatal Distraction Kickstarter page here.

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Dan Fugardi

Dan Fugardi is a producer and entrepreneur who drives community development initiatives ranging from at-risk youth programs, education, gang intervention, child safety, and related international affairs. Dan was formerly a member of the U.S. Navy and continues to work with various levels of government as it pertains to these issues. He is now a real estate professional and owner of the financial technology company, Clout. In all business ventures and film related projects, Dan seeks to incorporate the critical community issues that require public support in a way that provides value and sustainability for participating entities.


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