A ride in the car puts many babies and young kids right to sleep. Sometimes, they are so peaceful and quiet in the backseat that we can forget they are even there. It can also be tempting to leave a sleeping baby in the car so we don’t have to wake them up.
What All Caregivers Need to Know about Pediatric Vehicular Heatstroke
- Did you know that a child’s body heats up three to five times faster than an adult’s body? Or that more than 70% of heat stroke deaths occur in children younger than age two?
- Heat stroke begins when the core body temperature is at or above 104 degrees.
- Heatstroke deaths have been recorded every month of the year in nearly all 50 states. Nevada has had 13 pediatric vehicular heatstroke deaths since 1998, and is ranked as the 9th highest state for pediatric vehicular heatstroke deaths per capita. To learn more visit noheatstroke.org
- According to Safe Kids Worldwide, a car can heat up to 19 degrees in just 10 minutes, and cracking a window does not help.
To reduce the number of deaths from heatstroke, remember to ACT with these three simple steps.
Ways to Help Prevent Vehicle Heat Stroke Deaths Encourage Everyone to ACT
- Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. Always lock your doors and trunks – even in your driveway, as children who get inside an unlocked vehicle can become trapped. And always keep your keys and key fobs out of the reach of kids.
- Create More than half of heatstroke deaths occurred when a distracted caregiver forgot their child was in the vehicle and walked away. Make sure to keep reminders and creating habits, such as placing your briefcase, purse, or phone next to the child safety seat.
- Take action. If you see a child alone in a car, take action. Call 911. Emergency personnel are trained to respond to these situations.