Advocates urge parents to follow safety tips to avoid leaving children in hot cars

Advocates are urging parents to keep their children safe from dangerously hot cars after a deadly incident in Franklin Township.

News 12 Staff

Aug 31, 2022, 8:44 PM

Updated 654 days ago

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Advocates are urging parents to keep their children safe from dangerously hot cars after a deadly incident in Franklin Township.
Authorities say a 2-year-old girl was left unattended in a car Tuesday afternoon, leading to her death.
The National Safety Council reports that in New Jersey, there have been 15 child heatstroke deaths in vehicles since they started keeping track in 1998. The victims range in age from 4 months to 11 years old.
The national nonprofit Kids and Car Safety aims to prevent children from being hurt or killed in and around vehicles, whether it be from being run over or vehicular heat stroke.
The group says child heat deaths happen on average 38 times a year in the United States. They say there's been a dip in the last two years, but they fear the tragedies will increase as more parents get into their post-pandemic routine.
Many cars come with reminders to check the back seat, while others have a detection system that lets drivers know when someone is left in the back seat.
“It could be a child, a vulnerable adult, or a pet, and this would set off literally bells and whistles. It sets off the horn and car alarm,” says Sue Auriemma, of Kids and Car Safety. “When we talk about prevention, the biggest tip I can give to parents is they should never make the mistake to think this couldn't happen to them...It happens to loving, caring and doting parents. "
Auriemma says some children get stuck inside cars themselves, so parents need to make sure their cars are always locked. In some cases, parents intentionally leave their children, thinking it's OK.
“It's not OK to leave a child alone in a vehicle for any amount of time. There's a great focus on it being so hot, but we have seen children die on days where the high temperature was as low as 60 degrees,” Auriemma says.
She says a child's body temperature heats up three to five times faster than an adult, and those car temperatures can get fatal within 10 minutes.
For those who don't have a car with the reminders and warning systems, there are alarms available that attach to a car seat.
Another solution is to leave something in the back seat that you need to take with you, such as your cell phone.


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