GREAT FALLS -
All too often enough, parents make the mistake of thinking they can just quickly run into a store and leave their son or daughter in the car without there being a threat to the child's well being. Sadly, rising summer temperatures could easily be deadly for a child as is evidenced by the fact that in just the first seven months of 2014, there have been 18-hot-car-deaths across the country.
KFBB reporters spoke with child-care professionals who says that within ten-minutes, the temperature of your car could rise by nearly 20-degrees.
Pediatric nurse practitioner Nicole White says that children are more-susceptible to heat fluctuations than adults because their metabolisms can't handle the influxes in heat temperatures.
"Children can't tolerate heat fluctuations the way adults do (because) they are comprised of more water and their propensity for going into heat stroke happens more rapidly," White said.
So what will happen if you leave your child unattended in the car?
Montana State Police says there are a number of laws that could be applied as a result of a hot-car-death. For example, if a child were to perish inside a car with scorching temperatures and the parent or guardian was negligent and/or forgot about them (or did not realize it was that hot), then they could be charged with negligent homicide. Of course, if it were done on purpose then it would be considered a homicide.
Although you can not control the heat, there is one thing you can control and that is keeping your family safe.
Read on for some tips that could protect your loved ones from the summer heat.
- Keep children hydrated with six-to-eight glasses of water a day. (Remember, if you are thirsty- you are already dehydrated)
- Apply as much sunscreen as possible to your child. (A SPF of 30 or higher is recommended)
- Use a reminder tool such as an alarm or by leaving an important item like your purse or cell phone in the back seat to help you remember that your child is in the car