AAA Reminds Public of Vehicle Heatstroke Death Risks

HYANNIS – AAA is reminding the public of the risks of vehicle heatstroke deaths during summer months.

The organization reports that an average of 38 children die in hot cars every year, adding that children are more likely to experience heat stroke.

AAA said that on an 80-degree day, the temperature inside of a car can increase by 20 degrees over the span of 10 minutes. In 20 minutes, it can reach a potentially fatal 109 degrees.

Twenty percent of these deaths happen when someone responsible for the child leaves them in the car to do an errand or so the child can continue napping.

AAA notes that people assume lowering the car’s windows will be enough to cool the vehicle, but that temperature increases happen quickly.

Fifty-three percent of the deaths occur when an adult forgets a child inside the car, with 46% involving a change in routine where a different caretaker transports the child.

AAA notes these scenarios are more likely to happen on weekdays and the group suggests storing a cell phone or work bag in the back seat when kids are present in the car as an added precaution.

Twenty-six percent of cases involve a child entering a vehicle without adult supervision, so drivers are encouraged to lock their vehicles when parked in driveways or garages to avoid these situations.

Some car manufacturers have already introduced ‘rear seat reminder’ technology into their vehicles, with several others have agreed to install it in all cars sold in the country by 2025.

The experts advise anyone who comes across an unattended child or pet in a locked car to call 911 and to make efforts to remove the passenger from the vehicle.

By Brian Engles, NewsCenter

About Brian Engles

Brian Engles is a longtime local of the Cape. He studied Film & TV at Boston University and in addition to his role at Cape Cod Broadcasting Media, he also works as a music instructor and records original songs.
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