This thing has been seriously troubling my mind. Kindly pay attention to it. I will be brief. Whilst some children were playing together on a family compound, one among them, a little girl, feeling thirst, took leave of the playground and walked into the house. She made for a chest freezer (what is commonly called deep freezer) to pull out a bottle of water.
Unable to reach for any of the bottles inside the half-stocked freezer, she held the top lid of the freezer upwards with one hand and strenuously helped herself to the edge of the freezer to her abdomen level.
As she leaned her abdomen on the edge (still holding the top lid upwards) and stretched the other free hand hard towards a bottle in the freezer, she lost hold of the lid and tumbled into the deep freezer. The top lid also dropped shut with the little girl locked inside the freezing white box.
Later, the play outside was over and her elder siblings began to look for her. Their mother returned from the adjoining house (where she apparently had been engaged in a discussion with a neighbour friend whilst her children were playing on their own) only to join the desperate search for her daughter. Hours later, the father returned from work, fatigued. He was welcomed with the unpleasant news— as he was undoing his neck tie— that one of the little members of the family was missing. He asked questions. The answers he got had no iota of clue.
All that while, they least suspected she was in the deep freezer. Fatigued and confused in addition, the father needed water to drink before he would drive to the police to lodge a report. He walked briskly to the chest freezer and lifted the lid.
The sight came like a flaming spear through his heart. Tragedy. A scream of horror went through the roof of the house. Such was the scream of horror that the birds on the roof, sensing terror, took to flight unprepared for cover. The girl was already frozen…dead. The ice did not give her a chance to close her eyes. She must have cried so loud in vain for help and must have struggled so hard in that lonely and dark place to push open the lid from inside to no avail before she died. Let us pay attention to this. And if there is no child around you for the moment, kindly inform your families and friends outside your home about this if there are children in their care and there is a chest freezer around.
Children also have a midnight habit of just walking out of bed in the middle of their sleep when their parents or guardians are fast asleep to grab soft drinks, fruits, water, yoghurts and the like from deep freezers. I shared this true story about the girl frozen alive some time ago on the radio. Let us pay attention to this in the best way we can so we don’t wake up one day to any horror in our deep freezers. Deep freezers are very important to our domestic life but we need to keep them under lock and key as one of the ways to control their domestic use to avoid misfortune especially where there are little children. May peace be in your home.
By Edward Adeti – Ghanaian journalist, Upper East Region