Danger Alert: Kids in Hot Cars (Part 2)

Danger Alert: (Part 2)

At 104 degrees, the body’s vital organs and bodily functions are affected. Death occurs at 107 degrees. Children are particularly vulnerable to heat-related death because they are often either asleep in the backseat or unable to get out of a hot car on their own. And extreme heat affects children more than adults because their central nervous system is not fully developed, making them less capable of coping with rapid temperature changes. In fact, a child’s core body temperature can rise five times faster than that of an adult, causing heatstroke and other heat-related complications in a short amount of time.

In the last 27 years, nearly 800 children have died in hot cars across the country, with 29 dead so far this year. These deaths are tragic, accidental, and completely preventable. Any person is capable of forgetting a child in the car or making a seemingly harmless decision that can lead to a tragic ending. Two senators have introduced legislation to require vehicle manufacturers to install motion sensors that would detect if a child has been left in the backseat. Non-profits like KidsandCars.org have developed checklists to help keep your kids safe:

? Look before you lock – and lock your vehicles when parked at home (keeping car keys out of reach of children).
? Make it a routine to check the backseat or open the back door of your vehicle every time you park.
? Place something of value in the backseat to remind you to check back when you park, like a wallet or a purse.
? Place a stuffed animal in your child’s car seat and then after you put your child in the seat, place the stuffed animal in the passenger seat, so it will remind you that a child is in the back.
? Use a vibrant colored key chain to remind you to check the backseat before you lock and leave your car.
? Make arrangements with your child care provider, so they call you if your child hasn’t arrived as scheduled.
? If your child is missing from home, check all vehicles in the neighborhood first.

Please be mindful not to leave a child in a hot car – even for a minute.