Toddler hit, killed by SUV in Palmetto

Manatee County

PALMETTO, Fla. (WFLA) – A toddler died Friday morning after being hit by an SUV in Palmetto, the Florida Highway Patrol says.

Troopers say the incident happened around 11:15 a.m. on 69th Street East.

According to Florida Highway Patrol troopers, 23-month-old Ariyah Phillips was playing in her front yard when she either saw something in the roadway or wanted to go in the street for some reason and stepped out in front of the vehicle.

Troopers say the SUV had no time to stop and hit the toddler.

“It does appear that the child got away from the adults who were supposed to be watching her,” FHP Trooper Kenn Watson said. “When she ran out into the road, obviously this vehicle had very little time to react. And unfortunately, we’ve lost a 23-month-old child.”

No charges are pending at this point in the investigation.

“I just want to remind everyone, let’s have that good situational awareness when we’re driving,” Trooper Watson said. “Let’s have even more awareness when we have a small child in our care. If you live close to a roadway, you must make sure that you have eyes on them at all times.”

Troopers say the driver of the SUV that hit the child stayed at the scene.

“As you can imagine, this person is also a victim,” Trooper Watson said. “They are devastated at this point in time.”

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