Purse, Keys, Phone...Baby??
National Heat Awareness Day is observed each year on the last Friday in May. Heat is one of the leading weather killers in the United States resulting in numerous fatalities each year. Unfortunately, many of these deaths are children. Approximately 40 children die in hot cars each year from heat-related deaths after being trapped inside motor vehicles.
Even on a nice spring day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to between 100-120 degrees in just minutes. According to Safe Kids Worldwide, within 10 minutes the internal temperature inside a vehicle can rise 20 degrees higher than the external temperature, and after 30 minutes, the car's interior can be 34 degrees hotter.
Look Before You Lock Prevention Tips:
- Do not let your children play in an unattended vehicle. Teach them that a vehicle is not a play area.
- Never leave infants or children in a parked vehicle, even if the windows are partially open.
- Make a habit of looking in the vehicle - front and back - before locking the door and walking away.
- Ask your childcare provider to call you if your child does not show up for childcare.
- Always lock vehicle doors and trunks and keep keys out of children's reach. If a child is missing, check the vehicle first, including the trunk.
- If you see a child alone in a hot vehicle, call the police. If they are in distress due to heat, get them out as quickly as possible. Cool the child rapidly. Call 911 or your local emergency number immediately.
- Do things to remind yourself that a child is in the vehicle, such as:
- Writing yourself a note and putting the note where you will see it when you leave the vehicle;
- Placing your purse, briefcase or something else you need in the back seat so that you will have to check the back seat when you leave the vehicle; or
- Keeping an object in the car seat, such as a stuffed toy. When the child is buckled in, place the object where the driver will notice it when he or she is leaving the vehicle.