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Take Extra Precaution in Hot Weather

By Staff | Aug 5, 2020

As hot weather takes hold, people need to take a step back from their busy lives to remember one important thing: Never leave children or pets alone in unattended vehicles.

That seems like common sense, but sadly it happens all to often with deadly consequences. In 2019, it is estimated 52 children across the country died of heatstroke after being left in hot cars.

This past week a local couple helped rescue two dogs from a car while the owner was shopping, both dogs were lucky to survive.

The temperature inside a car rises almost 20 degrees in 10 minutes, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. When temperatures outside are in the 80s, the inside of a car can reach close to 125 within 60 minutes, according to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Heatstroke begins when the core body temperature reaches 104 degrees.

The State Attorney Generals Office recently offered some advice for people on the matter.

Safety tips to remember if your child or pet is in the backseat:

1. Make it a habit to open the backdoor of your car every time you park, even if you know you do not have a child or pet in the backseat.

2. Keep a belonging such as a cellphone, wallet or purse in the backseat so you will open the back door to get those items.

3. Keep a stuffed animal in the car seat when it’s not occupied. When the child is in the seat, place the stuffed animal in the front passenger seat as a visual reminder.

4. Always keep your vehicle locked so children cannot accidentally get trapped inside when the vehicle is not in use.

Actions for bystanders:

5. Act quickly. The primary concern is the safety of the child and animal.

6. Assess the health of the child or animal, take note of the make, model, description and license plate number into the business establishment where the vehicle is parked and have the manager announce the situation and vehicle information over the intercom in an attempt to find the owner.

7. If the owner doesn’t immediately respond, call 911 or the local humane authority.

8. If the child or animal’s health seems to be deteriorating, take more drastic measures. Get at least one other person to confirm your assessment, then take action to get the child or animal out of the vehicle.

9. Signs of heatstroke include excessive sweating, panting, vomiting, lethargy and lack of coordination.

The past few weeks have relaxed my mind somewhat and brought back past memories of the heat filled summer days of my youth. Oppressive heat as we’ve been experiencing commands our attention and weighs on our brains and taxes our bodies.

Let’s all enjoy the warm weather months and have a great time. Summer is the annual call for people to make good common sense decisions and stay safe while partaking of the fun.

Summertime memories, are forever etched in our minds.

Memories of warm rain and cooling shade, of hot, sandy beaches, foamy saltwater, the chlorinated blue of neighborhood pools, of warm, bright mornings with time for play, and hot hazy afternoons with time to read a book.

Summertime is magical, especially for the young and surely at least in memory for those of a certain age. Memories abound of summers past, with time spent absorbed in a wondrous world

Summer, after all, is a time when wonderful things can happen to quiet people. For those few months, you’re not required to be who everyone thinks you are, and that cut-grass smell in the air and the chance to dive into the deep end of a pool give you a courage you don’t have the rest of the year. Summer just opens the door and lets you out.

Let’s not spoil it with careless acts of disregard for our children and pets. It doesn’t take a lot of time or effort to prevent a tragedy.