Every year during the summer months, children and animals are susceptible to Vehicular Heat Stroke with the peak being in July. A study held by The Department of Meteorology show that overall since 1998, 834 children have died from a heatstroke due to being left in a car. According to NoHeatstroke.org in 2018 alone, 53 children died, leading the deadliest year on national record.
Heat strokes arise when core body temperature reaches 104 degrees. The reason children are more susceptible, is that a child’s body temperature rises faster than adults. Causing vehicular heat stroke to occur in minutes. As the time continues to climb, so does the temperature in your vehicle. Reaching 20 degrees in just 20 minutes. By the 60-minute mark, temperatures are at 133 degrees or more. That is higher than the suggested water heater settings.
Here stands the question, what do you do if you see a child or pet trapped in a hot car? That is where the good Samaritan law comes. The Department of Meteorology & Climate Science at NoHeatStroke.org provide a graph illustrating the 21 states that have outlawed leaving kids/animals in the car. They are listed as Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin. These laws grant citizens permission to legally break a car window to rescue a child, if they perceive him/her to be in distress/danger. If you live in any of the states above having a window punch tool handy in your car can mean the difference of a child or animal’s life.