Forgotten Baby Syndrome – could it happen to you?

You may not think it's possible, but a growing number of parents have admitted to accidentally leaving their baby alone for hours


An American mum, whose baby sadly died after being forgotten in a hot car for hours, is campaigning to make families more aware of so-called “Forgotten Baby Syndrome”.


In 2007, Lyn Balfour, 40, did the nursery run as usual, except that inexplicably she forgot to take son Bryce, 9 months, out of the car and into nursery. It was not for several hours, until she received a phone call from her nursery, that Lyn realised her baby had been in the back of the car for hours.

“At first I didn’t understand,” Lyn said. “Then I ran to the car. The morning was flashing through my mind. I was thinking, ‘I did drop him off. I know I dropped him off’.”

Tragically Bryce died, and now Lyn has dedicated herself to raising awareness about these scary, but rare, situations.

“I had heard about this happening to other people and I thought it was crazy,” Lyn explained. “I thought there was no way it could ever happen to me. But the truth is we are all vulnerable. We are all capable of making a fatal mistake.”

Lyn suggests making an arrangement with the nursery or your child’s minder to check in if there’s an unexplained absence and always keep visual clues close to you, such as a changing bag on the passenger seat of the car.

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