Reporter tests heat in car to warn parents about leaving kids
LITTLE ROCK (KATV)-- 18 children across the country have died after being left in hot cars.
No child in Arkansas has died, but Little Rock Police said they've responded to calls involving children in hot cars.
"There have been some in recent weeks that have not been televised or anything like that but, there have been some, fortunately the kids did not sustain any kind of permanent physical injuries," said Lt. Sidney Allen, Little Rock Police.
According to the Department of Earth and Climate Services, from 1998 to 2012, 15 children in Arkansas died after baking in a hot car. In the past 15 years, nationwide 624 children died. In half of those cases, adults had forgotten that the child was still in the car.
"Let's say, on a day like today I'm assuming we're in the 90s and leaving a child in the car for 10 minutes, we're reaching closer to 120 degrees for a child to basically bake in a car almost like you would think of when putting something in an oven to bake," said Arkansas Children's Hospital Home Safety Analyst, Olivia Wilson.
Experts said, it only takes 5 to 10 minutes for a child to start getting uncomfortable, and within just an hour or two a child can die.
"Maybe mom sits her purse on the backseat, and so when she gets to work and reaches back there to get her purse, she sees child is back there," added Wilson. "And now she remembers I'm at work but I have to drop the child off at school before I can go into work," she said.
If you do see a child left unattended in a hot car, Lt. Allen said call 911, but if you feel like the child is in immediate danger you will not be charged for breaking a window.
If you're the parent who left them in the car, you'll be facing endangering the welfare of a minor charges, or even worse if the child dies.