As the summer season gets underway, the Bayhealth Trauma and Emergency Services Department wants to make the public aware of the dangers of leaving children in vehicles during warm weather, even for short periods of time.
“The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says one child dies from heat stroke every 10 days from being left in a hot vehicle. As outside temperatures rise so too do the risk of kids being seriously injured or dying from heat stroke,” said Bayhealth Trauma Program Manager Deborah Eberly, RN, BSN, CEN, CNML.
According to Eberly, outside air temperatures can sometimes be deceptive. Even when outside temperatures are in the 60s, temperatures inside a car can climb up to 110 degrees Fahrenheit. When outside temperatures are in the 80s, temps inside the car may rise to potentially deadly levels even when the window is rolled down by two inches. Kids are especially susceptible to the heat.
“Children’s body temperatures can rise up to five times faster than that of an adult. That’s why it’s especially important to never leave a child unattended in a vehicle, even when the windows are partially open. Always make it a habit to check both the front and back of the vehicle when leaving,” said Eberly.