Chief John Dunn
1 School Street
Hull, MA 02045
For Immediate Release
Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Contact: Benjamin Paulin
Hull Police Provide Residents with Hot Car Safety Tips
HULL — With summer just over one week away, Chief John Dunn and the Hull Police Department would like to warn residents about the dangers of being trapped in hot cars and provide tips to keep everyone safe.
In the United States, 37 children die in hot cars every year, according statistics from the website noheatstroke.org. Several pets also die annually trapped in hot cars.
“Even if you need to make a very quick trip into a business or home, never leave a child, elderly person or pet trapped in a car for any amount of time,” said Chief Dunn. “The temperature inside a car can be drastically different than outside, and with the changing seasons, hot cars become very dangerous.”
Incidents of death from heatstroke are at their height between Memorial Day and Labor Day, however children can die trapped in hot cars in other months as well.
Heatstroke is classified as when a person’s core body temperature rises to 104 degrees Fahrenheit; a temperature of 107 degrees can result in irreversible organ damage or death. Young children’s bodies heat up three to five times faster than an adult’s, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics, thus putting them at higher risk.
A majority of those who die in hot cars do so because parents forget them in their vehicle. Temperatures inside a vehicle can rise nearly 20 degrees in 10 minutes, and as time goes on, the temperature could continue to rise.
According to noheatstroke.org:
- 87% of children who die are 3 years old or younger
- 54% are forgotten in a vehicle
- 27% are playing in an unattended vehicle
- 18% are intentionally left in a vehicle by an adult
Here are five recommendations from the non-profit Safe Kids Worldwide to keep everyone safe:
- If you see a child alone in a car, call 911
- Never leave a child alone in a car, not even for a minute
- Keep your car locked when you are not in it, otherwise kids may gain access and become trapped
- Put something in the back seat next to your child, such as a briefcase, purse, cell phone, or even one of your shoes so you do not forget them
- Set an alert on your phone to make sure you dropped your child off at daycare and develop a plan to be notified if your child is late or a no-show
If you see a child left in a car, take action immediately. Do not wait for the driver to return or assume that they will be back soon. If the child appears to be in distress, attempt to get them out of the car immediately and dial 911.
Pets should also not be left alone in hot cars. According to the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA-Angell), pets suffer needlessly and could die when left in hot cars, even on moderately warm days.
Anyone who has questions about hot car safety should contact the Hull Police Department at 781-925-1212.