OKLAHOMA CITY – As temperatures continue to heat up, several local agencies are reminding parents not to leave children locked in a hot car.
“It’s very stressful. We always have a higher sense of response when we know that it’s an infant or a child,” Major David Meyer, with the Oklahoma City Fire Department, said.
In just in the month of June alone, Oklahoma City fire crews have responded to 40 calls about children being trapped in a hot car.
“Thankfully, we’ve not lost any kids on our responses. So, we’re very thankful for that,” Meyer said.
However, it’s a different story in other states.
Nationally, there have already been 18 deaths in cases this year.
“This has happened nationwide when the ambient temperature has been as cool as 57 degrees. So, we are not talking that it has to be 100 out,” Laura Gamino, with Safe Kids Metro-Oklahoma City, said.
One thing AAA and Safe Kids Worldwide recommends is for parents to leave something like their cell phone in the back seat with their child to help serve as a reminder.
“Either our phone, our shoe, our purse, something. Even though our child is way more valuable than our phone, purse, or shoe, we just have to understand how distracted and how full our brains are,” Gamino said.
Gamino said a child can die of heatstroke on a 72-degree day so don’t let “cooler” summer days fool you. Even on a mild 70-degree day, the temperature inside of a car can rise 19 degrees in just 10 minutes.
Officials also remind anyone who notices a child locked in a hot car to take action immediately and call 911.