DPS: Five minutes is too long to leave a child in a hot car - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

DPS: Five minutes is too long to leave a child in a hot car

Federal officials and child safety advocates met on Thursday to put a stop to a practice that has become an issue for parents across the country - leaving kids in hot cars.

On average, 38 children will die while sitting in hot vehicles each year; this year that number is already at 17.

The law states that a child under the age of 7 years old can’t be left alone for more than five minutes, but Corporal John Gonzalez with DPS says any amount of time is too much.

"Don't leave anyone unattended, period, at any point in time, especially for little ones who don't know how to fend for themselves and the elderly who can't fend for themselves." Gonzalez says.

It only takes ten minutes for the temperature inside a car to rise 20 degrees, meaning a quick errand can have deadly consequences.

Gonzalez says if you see a child inside a car, the first thing you should do is call 911.

"Worst case scenario, busting out a window. The law says no more than five minutes left in a car, but we discourage it completely."

But the rules don't just apply to children. Pets, elderly people and those with disabilities should never be left alone.

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