6-Week-Old Baby Survives After Car Seat Ejected in Violent Crash Near Modesto

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A baby in a car seat that was ejected from a car in Northern California when it crashed last weekend survived with only minor injuries, police said.

Six-week-old Ezra Benitez was in a sport utility vehicle that crashed Sunday in the city of Turlock and flipped several times, the California Highway Patrol said.

The baby's car seat had been improperly installed, investigators said, and was flung out a broken window, KXTL-TV reported.

Ezra was found upside down in the car seat.

"I’ve been on for 17 years. I’ve never seen anything like this before," CHP Officer Thomas Olsen told the station. "This is a good learning moment for all of us who have children that the proper installation of a car seat is so important."

Ezra's father, Ulizes Benitez, said in an emailed statement to KXTL-TV that he crawled out of the SUV and searched frantically for his son, who was found by firefighters.

Ezra's mother was hospitalized with rib, tailbone and pelvis fractures.

The boy's father and a toddler-aged brother weren't hurt, authorities said.

"I’m so thankful to God and all the first responders that got there to help me and my family," Benitez wrote. "If there is something I have to say about this year is that I am beyond blessed and thankful."

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