The American National Safety Council recently revealed alarming data indicating that, on average, 37 children lose their lives annually in closed cars left under the scorching sun. Between 1998 and 2017, a heartbreaking total of 742 children succumbed to the dangers of being trapped in vehicles by their parents in parking lots, with heatstroke emerging as the primary cause of death, as reported by CNN.
The statistics paint a grim picture, revealing that 55 percent of these incidents occurred because parents unintentionally left their children in the car, while 27 percent involved children gaining access to vehicles on their own. Shockingly, 18 percent of cases involved parents knowingly leaving their children in overheated cars. In the unforgiving environment of a sun-soaked, closed car, temperatures can skyrocket by an average of 19 degrees within just 10 minutes.
While 21 U.S. states have implemented laws that prescribe criminal penalties for those intentionally leaving children unattended in vehicles, experts acknowledge the system’s inadequacies. To address this pressing issue and minimize the occurrence of such tragic incidents, experts recommend simple yet effective preventative measures.
One such suggestion is to place a wallet or mobile phone on the back seat. By doing so, individuals are prompted to check the back seat before closing the car, ensuring they are aware of their child’s presence. However, it’s essential to recognize that unforeseen circumstances may lead to accidental car lockouts, putting a child at risk in extreme weather conditions. In these emergency situations, it becomes imperative to swiftly locate and contact a 24/7 emergency locksmith. Whether through having spare keys or being prepared for such circumstances, proactive measures can facilitate a prompt response, ensuring the safety of children inadvertently left inside locked vehicles. Taking a holistic approach to awareness, prevention, and preparedness is key to reducing the heartbreaking toll of children suffering in locked cars.