Forgetting a Child in the Backseat of a Car

A HORRIFYING MISTAKE

 
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Babies and young kids sleep so peacefully that parents sometimes forget them trapped in the backseat of a parked car.

The temperature inside a parked car can double to 50°C in only 20 minutes. Children’s body temperatures warm 5 times faster than an adult’s. Leaving a child locked in a hot car can quickly lead to dehydration, shock, heatstroke and then death; even within a short period of time.

Unfortunately, for some parents; it can be tempting to leave a baby alone in a car while quickly running into the store; unaware of the danger that the extreme heat poses for the child.

In UAE; so far 42 children were found locked in cars since the beginning of this year; as has been recently reported by Dubai Police. In the USA each year, children die from heat stroke after being left unattended in motor vehicles most of them under 5 years of age.

Parents and other caregivers need to be educated that a child should never be left unattended in a vehicle; not even for a minute.

Parents can create reminders by putting something in the backseat next to child such as a purse or a cell phone that is needed at their final destination. And should make it a habit to “look before they leave” whenever getting out of the car.

It is equally important to make sure that cars are kept locked when not in use; so kids don’t get in on their own. It is also important to teach kids that vehicles should never be used as play area.

In case a child is missing, it is always important to check the pool first, and then the car, including the trunk.

In case if a child was found alone in a car; one should call the police or emergency services

Article by Dr. Abeer Khayat