July 31, 2013 is National Heatstroke Prevention Day. Typically when we think of heatstroke we think about overheating while being outside, but that is not always the case. Children left in hot cars are on the rise. Since 1998, there have been 559 heatstroke deaths resulting from children being left in a hot car. 87% of the children who died from vehicular heat stroke were age 3 or younger. In 2012, 32 children lost their lives after being left in an unattended motor vehicle. There have been several wrongful death cases where a daycare center leaves a child in an unattended vehicle. Georgia is one of the states that have higher incidents of fatality for children 3 and younger..
What you can do to prevent a child dying from heatstroke:
- Look twice before you lock your vehicle
- Do not let children play unattended near or in a vehicle
- Never leave an infant or child in an unattended vehicle even if the windows are open – the temperature can rise to dangerous levels quickly, take your child with you
- Ask you child care center to call you if you child does not arrive on time
- If you see an unattended child in a vehicle call 911 immediately