Summer Heat Safety Tips

Dozens of Babies, Toddlers, and Young Children are Injured or Killed Each Year after Being Left in Hot Vehicles

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today reminded parents and caregivers to “look before you lock” and remain aware of the dangers of leaving children in hot vehicles this summer. As part of National Heatstroke Prevention Day, the Governor and several New York State agencies are raising awareness about the deadly consequences of leaving babies, toddlers, and young kids in cars, and encouraging all New Yorkers to play a role in keeping children safe from heatstroke.

Heat Advisory_Thermometer“Warm temperatures and children in parked cars can be a deadly combination and has caused far too many preventable tragedies in New York,” Governor Cuomo said. “As outside temperatures continue to rise, we are urging New Yorkers to take extra precautions and remain aware and alert so we can keep our children safe and out of harm’s way.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA):

· More than 30 children, including one in New York State, died from heatstroke after being left in hot vehicles in 2014. Nationally, eight children have already died this year.

· More than 630 children in the United States have died from heatstroke since 1998.

More than half of those children were forgotten in vehicles; nearly 30 percent gained access by themselves and became trapped; and 17 percent were left by adults not fully aware of the dangers.

· In just ten minutes, a car can heat up 20 degrees, and rolling down windows often does little to cool the car down.
· Heatstroke can happen on a cloudy day, and can occur in temperatures as low as 57 degrees.

New York State Department of Motor Vehicles Executive Deputy Commissioner Terri Egan said, “There is no safe length of time, or any good reason, to leave a child in a parked car, especially in the summer when the risks are so high. Drivers across the state should take every precaution to prevent injuries and deaths to our most vulnerable New Yorkers. It is critical that anyone transporting a child takes precautionary measures that may save a life this summer.”

New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker said, “No child should ever die from heatstroke as a result of being left in a hot car. Simple precautionary steps can prevent these tragedies from ever happening. But busy parents and caretakers may require routine reminders to remove small children from parked vehicles.”

The NHTSA has organized a nationwide social media campaign to highlight the importance of heatstroke prevention, is currently running on all major social media channels utilizing the hashtags #heatstrokekills and #checkforbaby.

WATCH: New Department of Health Video to Raise Awareness of Heatstroke Dangers

Keep Kids Out of Hot Cars - videoThe New York State Department of Health (DOH) recently released a video, “Keep kids out of hot cars!” to raise awareness of the issue. Health officials recommend that parents and caregivers follow these tips to keep their children safe from heatstroke, and from being left alone in a hot vehicle.

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