The dangers of leaving children in a hot car - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

6/21/10

The dangers of leaving children in a hot car

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

By Tiffany Pelt - email

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - With summer officially here, so are the dangers of leaving children in this deadly heat.

Over the past 12 years there have been around 460 children die in the U.S. from being left in hot vehicles for long periods of time. Half of those deaths are children under two years old, and this year alone there have been at least 15 deaths.

"What ever environment you put them in, they're more likely to adopt the temperature of that environment," said Dr. Michael Weaver, Covenant Children's ER Director.

Weaver said it doesn't even take triple digit heat to be deadly. "At 70 degrees a car can get hot enough to harm a child. There can be brain damage; they could suffer heat stroke. Most of the children are found within a couple of hours and they've succumbed long before that," he said.

After putting a thermometer inside a car for ten minutes, about the time it takes you to run a short errand, the temperature rose to 110 degrees. All it takes is a core body temperature of 105 degrees to be deadly.

"Think of your hot car like a bath tub. You're not going to leave a six month old in the bath tub unattended, don't leave them in a car unattended," said Weaver.

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