Each year, our Sacramento car accident attorneys remind parents and caregivers about the dangers of vehicular heatstroke. Sadly, five children have lost their lives as of June 25 in hot car deaths this year. Hot car deaths claim the lives of approximately 39 children each year in the United States. Fifty-two children have died from heatstroke in vehicles in California since 1998.
Hot Car Deaths Happen Quickly
Vehicular heatstroke is dangerous for children. A car can heat up very quickly. In just 10 minutes, the temperature in a car can reach 99 degrees when it is 80 degrees outside. When it is 90 degrees outside, the temperature in a car reaches 109 degrees in just 10 minutes. Watch this video to see how quickly the temperature in your car reaches dangerous levels.
Heatstroke Kills Children Quickly
Heatstroke is dangerous. If a child’s body temperature reaches 106°F, the child could sustain brain damage or die without immediate medical treatment. If your child exhibits any symptoms of heatstroke or other heat-related illnesses, call for emergency help.
Symptoms of heatstroke include:
- Temperature of 104°F or higher
- Rapid heartbeat and breathing
- Severe headache
- Loss of consciousness
- No sweating
- Hot, flushed, dry skin
How Can You Prevent Hot Car Deaths in Sacramento?
If you see a child in a car without a parent or caregiver, call 911. The emergency operator may have you break the window if the child appears to be in distress or unconscious. While it seems unthinkable, about 54 percent of hot car deaths are because the parent or caregiver forgot the child.
You may not believe that this could happen to you, but parents who have lost children because of vehicular heatstroke probably thought the same thing. Tips that can help you prevent hot car deaths from happening to your family include:
- Utilize one or more of the apps available that warn you if your child is left alone in the vehicle.
- Ask your daycare provider to call you if your child is more than 10 minutes late.
- Get into the habit of looking in the back seat or opening the back door each time you exit the vehicle.
- Put your bag, cell phone, house keys, or shoes in the back seat to force yourself to open the back door to retrieve the item.
- Always lock your car when you exit, after checking to ensure everyone is out of the car. Place your keys in a safe place away from children.
- If your routine varies, tie a ribbon on your door handle to remind you to look in the back seat for your child.
Protect Your Child from Danger
It takes just a few moments each time you get out of the car to make sure that a child is not forgotten. In just a month, you can create a habit to check the car to make sure your child is not in the car. It is worth the time to prevent another death of a child because of vehicular heatstroke.
Sacramento Car Accident Attorneys Fighting for Your Rights
If you or your child is injured in a car accident, we want to help. Contact The Tiemann Law Firm at (916) 999-9000 or by visiting our website to schedule a free consultation with one of our Sacramento car accident lawyers.