Tips to prevent vehicle heat stroke

39 children die each year from being left in a hot car.

Sometimes babies sleep so soundly that busy parents can forget they’re even in the car. Other times, you may be tempted to leave the kids in the car while you run a quick errand, but young children are at higher risk for heat stroke because their bodies heat up three to five times faster than adults. That is why they should never be left alone.

Jill Drakeford of Carilion Children’s recommends setting little reminders so you never forget your child. This can be putting your purse or wallet in the back seat with her child. She can also leave her cell phone in the back. This way, she won’t be tempted to text and drive either.

Lastly, she recommends leaving a stuffed animal in the back seat where the car seat goes. Then, when he puts his son in the car, he moves the stuffed animal out to seas of passengers as a reminder.

“It only takes about ten minutes for the inside of your vehicle to get about twenty degrees warmer than the outside. And so it’s not a long time. So we really want to make sure we’re doing everything we can to make sure we remind ourselves that our kids are in the back seat,” says Drakeford.

It also recommends that if you drop your child off at daycare, have the daycare call you at a certain time if your child hasn’t arrived.

As a pedestrian, if you ever see a child or pet locked in a hot car, you need to help immediately. According to the Roanoke County Fire and Rescue Department, the first thing you should do is call 9-1-1.

“You need to get them help. If there’s a child locked in a vehicle, you need to do what you think you need to do, definitely call 911 and start working to try to get that child or that pet out of that vehicle,” says Brian Clingenpeel, outreach coordinator community. for Roanoke County Fire and Rescue.

You never know how long that child or pet has been in that car, so it’s important to help right away.

According to Safe Kids Southwest Virginiathere is a law in the Commonwealth that if you are doing in good faith what you need to do to get that child out of a car, you will never be prosecuted.

For more information and how you can help prevent vehicle heat stroke, Click here.

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