In 2015 there were 24 child heatstroke deaths nationwide. These children died because they were left in a hot vehicle and suffered heatstroke. What makes this so sad is that these deaths were preventable.
The Oneida County Health Department and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration are working to raise awareness about the dangers of kids in hot cars. Heatstroke is the number one killer of children, outside of car crashes. As the weather gets warmer, the dangers to children increase, and we have to remain vigilant.
Remember, never leave a child in a vehicle unattended, look in the backseat every time you leave your car, and always lock your car and put your keys out of reach from children.
Life is hectic, routines change, and many of us become forgetful. But one thing we can’t afford to be is distracted with our children. Come up with some ways to remind yourself that your child is in the car, such as placing a briefcase, purse, or cell phone in the back seat next to the car seat. That way, you’ll always check the back before you leave your car. Make it a habit to call your spouse after you’ve dropped off your child to make sure you didn’t forget. You can also notify daycare to call you if your child doesn’t show up. Set a reminder on your cell phone, or download a baby app that includes reminders.
If a bystander sees a child, always make sure the child is okay and responsive. If not, call 911 immediately. If the child appears okay, you should attempt to locate the parents; or have the facility’s security or management page the car owner over the PA system. If the child is not responsive and appears in distress, attempt to get into the car to assist the child.
For more information visit www.safercar.gov/heatstroke