MINNEAPOLIS — Doctors say the chances of an adult surviving a fall from an 11-story balcony are small.
Somehow, 1-year-old Musa Dayib fell from a balcony on Sunday and survived.
"It's definitely a miracle. It's God's gift to his family. Kids don't fall this far and make it often. Especially without a serious brain injury. You or I would've been dead," physician Tina Slusher tells WFAA's sister station KARE at Hennepin County Medical Center, where Dayib is in critical but stable condition.
Machines are breathing for him, both of his arms are broken, his lungs are bruised and his back is fractured. But Slusher says two things worked in his favor.
"Little (kids) are more flexible and don't break as easily as we do and he also fell in a very small patch of mulch," she said.
Doctors say it is to early to tell if the child will have long-term complications. For now, he is heavily sedated. Coupled with his broken arms, bruised lungs and other fractures he suffered a concussion. Initially doctors thought his skull was fractured but that was ruled out late Tuesday afternoon.
Dayib's unlikely survival is at the center of the community rallying for better apartment safety precautions for children.
"I don't think my brother and his wife will recover from this. They really torture themselves," said Abdirahim Ahmed, Dayib's uncle.
Residents of the building community, in which about half of the units have balconies, have suggested installing an extra lock or latch to secure the door leading to the balconies.
George Sherman, president of the community's management company, said they have spent about $65 million in renovations to the community, and that if he were to make any additional changes, that would include reducing the spacing on the railings from 5½ to four inches.
"Twenty five percent of the units have requested a block to prevent the door from being opened by children," Sherman said. "We have had a request for a number in the last couple of days. (We are) looking at more permanent locks that the fire department approves."
Sherman says some units have cardboard block that prevents a child from sliding the door open. These are provided free of charge to residents.
In the past, a child fell off a balcony while playing. Sherman said this is the first time he recalls a child slipping through the open space of the railing. He pointed out that the circumstances surrounding the case are still unclear and called the incident an "accident."