Safeguarding Kids during this Scorching Summer

John’s a good dad. He decides to give his wife a break and take their 2 -year-old daughter, Sarah, with him in the car while he runs his Saturday morning errands. Planning a quick trip to the grocery, John reasons that no harm can come if he quickly runs in the store for few minutes, leaving Sarah strapped in her seat, safely locked in a closed car. He’ll avoid the hassle of taking her out of her seat, wrestling with the buggy and upsetting her world. She’s engrossed in that new toy he bought her this morning anyway and, after all, it’s a nice day. Just 75 degrees outside. She’ll be fine. So, he parks in the shade, locks the car and leaves Sarah alone while he shops.
Safeguarding Kids during this Scorching Summer
The truth is that John has unwittingly left his daughter in a torturous hotbox. Even when the outside air is a mild 75 degrees, the temperature inside a closed car will reach 105 degrees in just 10 minutes. Since a child’s body temperature rises as much as 5 times faster than an adult’s, Sarah’s core temperature will quickly increase to heat stroke levels, around 104. Three degrees higher and Sarah could die.
John broke one of the cardinal rules of child care. Never leave a child unattended in a car even for a short period. Always take your child with you. And if you see a child alone in a vehicle, immediately call 911.
Tragically, accidents happen to the best of us. But we can certainly take some simple measures to avoid these horrific cases of forgetfulness. Create reminders to help you remember your child is strapped in the backseat. Place your purse, briefcase, or any other essential item on the seat next to your child. Leave a stuffed animal in your passenger seat to remind you that a child is in the back seat.
These are visual cues to check the backseat before leaving the vehicle.

Talk to family members, friends, and caregivers about the importance of never leaving a child behind. Encourage them to follow the same precautions as you and share information on social media platforms to reach a wider audience. There are various smartphone apps available that can send reminders to check the backseat when you arrive at your destination. Additionally, some car seat manufacturers offer smart car seats like the Evenflo Gold Revolve360 with SensorSafe with built-in sensors that alert parents if a child is left behind, unexpected chest clip unbuckles, temperature too hot or too cold, and child seated too long

Choose shaded areas when you’re parking. The shade will help reduce the temperature inside the car. But a shady tree is not a substitute for safe childcare. Rolling down your windows and shady parking is almost no help in reducing vehicle interior temperatures. And always lock your car. A vehicle is not a playground; no child should ever be allowed to play in a parked car.

John, returning from his grocery errand, found Sarah suffering the early stages of heatstroke. He made the right moves by quickly removing her from the car and rapidly cooling her. John learned what we all need to remember. There is never a reason to leave a child alone in a parked car. Check the back seat.

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