23 Aug 2014
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Gloucester Township Police Warn About Dangers of Leaving Children in Hot Cars

The advisory comes following 12 confirmed heatstroke related deaths of children in cars in 2014.

Gloucester Township Police Warn About Dangers of Leaving Children in Hot Cars
The Gloucester Township Police Department is cautioning residents about the dangers of leaving children in hot cars in the wake of recent reported heat stroke related deaths, including an incident in Ridgefield earlier this month.

Safety tips from kidsandcars.org:

• Never leave children alone in or around cars; not even for a minute.

• Put something you'll need like your cell phone, handbag, employee ID or brief case, etc., on the floor board in the back seat.

• Get in the habit of always opening the back door of your vehicle every time you reach your destination to make sure no child has been left behind. This will soon become a habit. We call this the “Look Before You Lock” campaign.

• Keep a large stuffed animal in the child's car seat when it’s not occupied. When the child is placed in the seat, put the stuffed animal in the front passenger seat. It's a visual reminder that anytime the stuffed animal is up front you know the child is in the back seat in a child safety seat.

• Make arrangements with your child’s day care center or babysitter that you will always call if your child will not be there on a particular day as scheduled.

• Keep vehicles locked at all times; even in the garage or driveway and always set your parking brake.

• Keys and/or remote openers should never be left within reach of children.

• Make sure all child passengers have left the vehicle after it is parked.

• When a child is missing, check vehicles and car trunks immediately.

• If you see a child alone in a vehicle, get involved. If they are hot or seem sick, get them out as quickly as possible. Call 911 or your local emergency number immediately (228-4500).

• Be especially careful about keeping children safe in and around cars during busy times, schedule changes and periods of crisis or holidays.

• Use drive-thru services when available. (restaurants, banks, pharmacies, dry cleaners, etc.)

• For additional information about ways to keep children safe in and around vehicles, visit www.KidsAndCars.org

According to ggweather.com, there have been at least 17 heatstroke deaths of children in vehicles so far this year, including 12 confirmed and five awaiting final findings by the medical examiner.

Last year, at least 44 children died in cars, 39 of which were confirmed to be caused by heat stroke.

Since 1998 there have been at least 623 documented cases of heatstroke deaths of children in vehicles.

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