Heatstroke is the number one killer of children, outside of car crashes. That’s why The Miley Legal Group has joined the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in attempting to reduce these deaths by reminding parents and caregivers about the dangers of heatstroke and leaving children in hot cars. In 2016 there were 39 heatstroke deaths of children in vehicles; currently news outlets have reported over 6 heatstroke deaths this year.
“As outside temperatures rise, the risks of children dying from being left alone inside a hot vehicle also rises,” said Tim Miley of The Miley Legal Group. “One child dies from heatstroke nearly every 10 days from being left in a hot vehicle, but what is most tragic is that these deaths could have been prevented.“
The Miley Legal Group urges all parents and caregivers to do these three things:
- NEVERleave a child in a vehicle unattended;
- Make it a habit to look in the back seat EVERY time you exit the car;
- ALWAYSlock the car and put the keys out of reach.
And, if you ever see a child left alone in a hot vehicle, take appropriate action and call 911 right away.
- If you are abystander and see a child unattended:
- Always make sure the child is okay and responsive. If not, call 911
- If the child appears ok, attempt to locate the parents; or have the facility’s security or management page the car owner over the PA
- If there is someone with you, one person should actively search for the parent while the other waits at the
- If the child is not responsive and appears in great distress, attempt to get intothe car to assist the child, even if that means breaking a
Know the warning signs of heatstroke, which include: red, hot, and moist or dry skin; no sweating; a strong rapid pulse or a slow weak pulse; nausea; confusion; or acting strangely. If a child exhibits any of these signs after being in a hot vehicle, quickly spray the child with cool water or with a garden hose – NEVER an ice bath. Call 911.
Children’s body temperatures can rise up to five times faster than that of an adult, and heatstroke can occur in temperatures as low as 57 degrees. On an 80-degree day, a car can reach deadly levels in just 10 minutes.
“59 percent of all vehicle-related heatstroke deaths in children are caused by a child accidentally being left in the car, and 29 percent are from a child getting into a hot car on their own,” said Miley. “We want to get the word out to parents and caregivers to please look before you lock.”
During the past week, The Miley Legal Group began mailing flyers to local childcare centers to provide to families within our community to continue to get the word out. These flyers include tips to ensure the children in our area are protected from the potential dangers of heatstrokes.
For additional information please visit www.safercar.gov or www.safekids.org.