CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Wednesday is National Child Vehicular Heatstroke Awareness Day. As we approach summer and temperatures continue to rise, so do the number of deaths of children left in hot vehicles.
On average, 37 children in the United States die in hot cars every year. Already this year, five children have died.
The temperatures inside cars rise very quickly once they're turned off. Even on a comfortable day, the temperatures inside cars can reach dangerous levels. Children have suffered heat stroke and died when the outside temperature has been as low as 60 degrees.
On a day with temperatures in the mid 80s like Wednesday, temperatures inside a vehicle can reach the low 100s in just 10 minutes and around 120 degrees in just 30 minutes. Vehicles with dark paint jobs and interiors heat up more quickly than light colored vehicles. Cracking the windows in a vehicle does not slow the heating process.
Children should not be left unattended in a car for any amount of time. Children are particularly vulnerable to heat stroke, as their bodies overheat 3-5 times faster than adults.
To help remember to remove young children from vehicles when you get out, put something else on the back seat like your wallet, cell phone, or purse. To prevent children from entering parked hot vehicles, always lock vehicles in driveways and garages and keep keys out of reach of small children.