Posted on 07.29.2014, Tuesday
Every 10 days, across the United States, a child dies while unattended in a hot car. It only takes a few minutes for a car to heat up and become deadly to a child inside. As summer temperatures continue to rise, more kids are at risk – the death toll this year has tragically already reached 18!
This Thursday, July 31st is National Heatstroke Prevention Day, and the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has joined with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in an attempt to reduce these deaths by reminding parents and caregivers about the dangers of heatstroke and leaving children in hot cars. Join the national movement to look before you lock!
Know the facts:
- In 10 minutes, a car can heat up 20 degrees Fahrenheit, and cracking a window does little to keep the car cool.
- Even with temperatures in the 60s, your car can heat up to well above 110 degrees. Heatstroke can happen when the temperature is as low as 57 degrees outside.
- A child’s body temperature can rise up to five times faster than an adult’s.
- A child dies when his/her temperature reaches 107.
- Heatstroke deaths have been recorded in 11 months of the year in nearly all 50 states.
- More than half of heatstroke deaths occurred when a distracted caregiver forgot a quiet child was in the vehicle. This is a preventable tragedy!
Reduce the number of deaths from heatstroke by remembering to ACT.
- A – Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. And make sure to keep your car locked when you’re not in it so children don’t get in on their own.
- C – Create reminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child such as a briefcase, a purse or a cell phone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important if you’re not following your normal routine.
- T – Take action. If you see a child alone in a car, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call. They are trained to respond to these situations. One call could save a life.
You can also help spread the word about vehicular heatstroke by joining the NHTSA, Safe Kids, and the ACF for a day-long social media conversation on July 31st. Use the hash tags #checkforbaby and #heatstrokekills on Facebook and Twitter and help save children’s lives this summer! Visit www.safercar.gov/heatstroke or www.safekids.org for more information.