NCDOI launches campaign stressing the danger of leaving children in cars
Published 11:54 am Thursday, May 23, 2019
As the summer approaches, the North Carolina Department of Insurance is launching a statewide summer safety campaign titled “Baby It’s Hot Inside” to remind people of the dangers of leaving children in cars.
According to a NCDOI press release about the campaign, across the country each year, about 35 to 40 children die as a result of heat exposure in cars. Last year was the was the worst on record for child vehicular heatstroke deaths, with 52 children dying, including a 7-month-old boy from Raleigh.
According to Safe Kids USA, a nonprofit organization that works to help keep kids safe, nine children have died of heatstroke in vehicles in the U.S. so far in 2019, including one from North Carolina, a 9-month-old boy from Winston-Salem.
“We are all excited about the return of warm weather in our state, but with that also comes a very real danger of heatstroke,” NCDOI Commissioner Mike Causey said. “Even the best of parents or caregivers can make the mistake of leaving a child unattended in a car even for a minute, and the end result can be more dangerous than people realize.”
“We just want to remind parents not to leave their child in the car, not even for a second,” added Adam Palmer, coalition coordinator for Safe Kids Stanly County.
Palmer said cars heat up quickly in the hot sun.
“Short periods of time left in a hot car can lead to severe health issues or unintentional deaths,” added Jennifer Layton, human services program specialist with the Stanly County Department of Public Health.
Safe Kids North Carolina will host events across the state using a large digital thermometer that will simultaneously display the temperatures inside and outside of a parked vehicle, while Safe Kids staff members bake s’mores inside the car’s interior to demonstrate how temperatures can quickly climb to dangerous levels, per the press release. In addition to the s’mores, Safe Kids will serve up safety tips to prevent child heatstroke deaths.