(WTAJ) — As a weekend heatwave approaches, the Pennsylvania State Police reminds parents and caregivers to never leave a child or pet alone in a vehicle.
According to kidsandcars.org, 21 children have died in hot cars so far this season. Since 1995, there have been a total of 12 child heatstroke deaths in vehicles within the commonwealth. Even when the windows are cracked, the inside of a car heats up very quickly. Studies show a child’s body overheats three to five times faster than an adult body.
Earlier this month, a new Pennsylvania law went into effect to protect good Samaritans who rescue children in hot cars. The law protects a person from liability related to damaging a car or its contents if they believe that a child is in danger. The individual must make a reasonable effort to locate the owner of the vehicle while using no more force than is necessary to enter, and remain at the scene until emergency responders arrive.
Parents or caregivers who leave a child in a hot car may face serious charges, including Endangering the Welfare of Children.