County Officials Warn of Dangers
of Leaving Children or Pets in Hot Vehicles
Would you put your child in a HOT OVEN?
....During the summer months of July through early September in San Diego we typically encounter some days with outside temperatures that can reach over100.0 Fahrenheit (F) and many of the extreme heat and humidity conditions that can fatigue you, such as dehydration, physical and mental fatigue, eyestrain, and over-exposure to sun.
....Heat stroke is the most serious heat-related illness. It occurs when the body becomes unable to control its temperature - the body’s temperature rises rapidly, the sweating mechanism fails, and the body is unable to cool down. Body temperature may rise to 106°F or higher within 10 to 15 minutes. Heat stroke can cause death or permanent disability if emergency treatment is not provided.
....As the hot temperatures continue through the summer months in San Diego County, children or pets left unattended in vehicles, even for a few minutes, are at extreme risk for heat stroke.
...... Seventy-eight children have died in the U.S. this year because they were left unattended in a vehicle. Of those, 15 died from vehicular hyperthermia, including two in California. Vehicular hyperthermia has killed 335 children in the last 10 years
....It's hard to imagine having to parents or caregivers about leaving children alone in cars, especially during the heat of the summer. But many caring and responsible people can forget the silent or sleeping child in the backseat. Others do not realize the risks involved in leaving their children in the car and what begins as a quick errand can turn to tragedy in a matter of minutes.
Don't left a baby in car!
....A safe summer begins with simply paying attention. Temperatures inside vehicles can rise by as much as 29 degrees in 20 minutes, making the inside of a car a deadly hot oven for a child or pet.
....County of San Diego Health and Humand Service officials are reminding residents not to leave children or pets unattended in vehicles under any circumstances. It’s against the law and carries a fine of $100 and criminal charges if the child is injured.
...“Being attentive and planning ahead can avert a needless tragedy,” said County of San Diego Supervisor Pam Slater-Price, Third District, at a news conference in front of the County’s Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA). She was joined by Dr. Wilma Wooten, County Public Health Officer; Mary Harris, Director of HHSA’s Child Welfare Services; Dawn Danielson, Director of the County’s Animal Services, parents, babies, dog owners and their pets.
.....“A car can quickly become an oven, even with mild outdoor temperatures,” Supervisor Pam Slater-Price. “Cars are not meant to be childproof, and children should never be left alone in a vehicle – not even for a minute.” “You should never let a child or pet sit unattended in a vehicle, not even to run a quick errand. A car should never be a babysitter,” added Slater-Price.
Even with mild outdoor temperature: Don't left a baby in car
....“A child’s body cannot regulate its temperature as an adult’s can. Their core body temperature also rises 3 to 5 times faster than an adult,” said Dr. Wooten. “In a matter of minutes, the inside of a car feels like an oven, even with the windows cracked open. If you see a child inside a car unattended it’s extremely important that you immediately call 9-1-1”.
...Many reported child deaths involve children who crawled into unlocked cars during play and then died in the sweltering heat. Once a child gets into a vehicle, they often lack the developmental skills to get themselves out again.
...Another hazard involves vehicle trunks. As more and more cars come equipped with remote trunk releases, trunk openers on key chains, and access to the trunk through fold down seats, it becomes easier for children to gain access. Often unintentional entrapment is the result. Car trunks can provide the deadly combination of high temperature, high humidity, and poor ventilation.
...“Horrific accidents can unfortunately happen in the blink of an eye,” said Harris. “Adults should ensure that vehicles are locked at all times and keys are kept away from children. They should make sure kids know that vehicles are not playgrounds and that they know where their children are at all times.”
Use these tips to help prevent accidents involving children in and around vehicles.
..• Keep vehicles locked at all times, even in the garage or driveway, and do not leave your car keys within reach or sight of children. • Teach children not to play in or around vehicles.
....Parents and caregivers can take a few simple, yet critical precautions to ensure tragedies like these don’t happen in San Diego County.
..If your child does get locked inside a car, get him or her out as soon as possible. If you can’t get him or her out yourself, call 911 immediately.
Children are not the only ones in danger when left inside cars. Pets, especially dogs, also face an extreme risk when left unattended in vehicles as they can be very susceptible to high temperatures.
“Many people don’t realize how quickly their car becomes too hot for a pet,” said Danielson. “Pets need adequate shade and plenty of fresh drinking water. A parked vehicle can quickly become a death trap for a beloved family pet.”
Warning signs of heat stroke include:
..• An extremely high body temperature (above 103°F)
If you see any of these signs, you may be dealing with a life-threatening emergency. Have someone call for immediate medical assistance while you begin cooling the victim.
..• Get the victim to a shady area.
Making a Report You Can Save a Life!
If you see a child , an elderly or a pet left unattended in a vehicle, you are urged to
immediately call 9-1-1.
Salud + Health Info is for information and educational purposes only. You should not rely on this information as a substitute for personal medical attention, diagnosis or hands-on treatment. If you are concerned abut your health or that of a child, please consult your family’s physician or health provider immediately and do not try to diagnose yourself.
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