Remember, Folks: Don’t Leave Your Kids In Hot Cars This Summer

People in many areas of the country are already talking about how hot it is right now, so why not take a few minutes to stress safety in such a heat wave?: We’re sure most of you know that leaving any living, breathing being locked inside a car on a hot day is a bad idea. But even so, accidents do happen. Even if you’re in a hurry, leaving your child in the car “just for a minute” is totally unacceptable.

In hot weather, temperatures can rise quickly to dangerous levels inside cars, something parents might not realize. When outside temps hit the 80s, it only takes 10 minutes, even with a window cracked, for a car to heat up to over 100 degrees inside. In 2011, 33 children were killed due to hyperthermia, down from 49 ids in 2010. Most of the fatalities were children under 4, report our smarter siblings over at Consumer Reports.

WIth the official start of summer today, it’s a good time to remind yourself to slow down and say, “Where’s baby? Look before you lock.” That’s the theme of the the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s new campaign to educate parents.

Here are some tips from Consumer Reports for the hot summer months:

• Never leave a child unattended in a vehicle, not even for a minute. In addition to being dangerous, it is the law in many states.
• Check the car to make sure that all occupants leave the vehicle or are carried out when unloading. If you lock the door with a key, rather than with a remote, it would force that one last look in the car before leaving it.
• Always lock your car and keep keys and remotes away from children.
• Keep a stuffed animal in the front passenger seat as a reminder of a child in the backseat.
• Place something in the backseat that you would need, such as a purse, briefcase or cell phone.
• Have a plan that your childcare provider will call you if your child does not show up.
• If you see a child alone in a car, especially if they seem hot, call 911 immediately to help get them out.

Summer heat wave brings the danger of children in hot cars [Consumer Reports]