MARYVILLE, Tenn. (WBIR) – A mischievous toddler couldn’t resist a chance to play with a whole bunch of colorful stuffed animals, so he managed to crawl inside a toy vending machine — and got stuck. The fire department quickly came to his rescue, and the boy wasn’t injured.
His family says they aren’t surprised by the tot’s antics. Colin Lambert is like most kids his age: He enjoys talking on the phone, dancing and looking at pictures of himself on Facebook.
Tuesday made for an incident perfect for taking pictures of Colin after the 18-month-old got himself stuck in a toy vending machine. Colin’s grandmother was watching him when she looked away for a moment.
“I got a text message, looked down, flicked it, looked down and didn’t hear the bang — and with Colin, you have to hear the bang or you don’t see him for another 10 seconds,” said Diane O’Neill. “All I could see was his feet. He had already crawled in. I grabbed his feet, and he kicked my hand. And he got in, climbed up and over glass partition, and sat down in the toys.”
O’Neill says her grandson loves crawling into and onto just about everything he can, so she wasn’t surprised when he got in. But she was worried about dangers inside the machine.
“My biggest fear was that he was going to climb back over and try to get out,” said O’Neill. “The plastic they had that held the toys in is cracked and broken in several places. I was afraid he was going to try to climb over and get hurt.”
O’Neill quickly called police and her daughter, who was sleeping after a long day at work.
“She shows up at my house — 5 o’clock — wakes me up, ‘So here’s the thing: I called the fire department,’ and goes into this long explanation,” said Colin’s mother. “And I said, ‘All I want to know: ‘Is my kid OK?’ She shows me the picture, and my husband and I start laughing because we’re not surprised. It was a matter of time he did something like this, I figured.”
Back inside the laundromat, you can see the machine Colin got stuck in held together by tape. Meanwhile, Colin’s grandmother says Maryville firefighters did let him have one toy to take home.