Safe Kids Kansas

Preventing Accidental Injury.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 25, 2011

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

Safe Kids Kansas Reminds Parents that Hot Weather and Vehicles
can be a Deadly Combination for Kids

Overheating deaths are preventable with a few important tips

Topeka, Kan. -- Safe Kids Kansas is working to increase awareness and urge parents and caregivers to never leave children alone in a vehicle.  With the goal of having no more children die from heat stroke when they are “forgotten” in cars, Safe Kids Kansas reminds parents and caregivers to always check for sleeping children before leaving a vehicle.

Between 1998 and 2010, 496 children died from heat stroke because they were left unattended in vehicles that became too hot for them to survive. Forty-nine of those occurred in 2010 alone. “A child’s core body temperature rises 3 to 5 times faster than an adult’s and unattended children have no way of protecting themselves in a hot vehicle” says Cherie Sage, State Director for Safe Kids Kansas coordinator. “The overall goal of this campaign is to make sure no more children will die in 2010 because they were unattended in a vehicle. We want parents and caregivers to take precautions so that this tragedy does not happen to them.” 

More than 50 percent of the children who died from heat stroke were forgotten by a caring adult who became distracted when they left the vehicle.  Thirty percent of kids who died from hyperthermia were left unattended by an adult or gained entry into an unlocked vehicle and became trapped and overcome by heat. It takes only minutes for a child to be at risk of death and serious, permanent injury in a hot car. Drivers must keep car doors locked and keys out of reach from young children.

Safe Kids Kansas urges all adults who transport children to take the following steps:

For more information on preventing hyperthermia deaths, please call Safe Kids Kansas at 785-296-0351 or visit www.ggweather.com/heat and www.safekids.org/nlyca. Be sure to NEVER LEAVE YOUR CHILD ALONE in a car.

Safe Kids Kansas, Inc. is a nonprofit Coalition of over 70 statewide organizations and businesses dedicated to preventing accidental injuries to Kansas children ages 0-14. Local coalitions and chapters cover Allen, Anderson, Butler, Clay, Coffey, Dickinson, Doniphan, Douglas, Elk, Ellis, Finney, Geary, Harvey, Johnson, Kiowa, Labette, Leavenworth, Marion, Marshall, McPherson, Mitchell, Montgomery, Pottawatomie, Riley, Saline, Sedgwick, Shawnee, Smith, and Sumner counties, as well as the city of Emporia and the Metro Kansas City Area (Wyandotte county and several Missouri counties.) Safe Kids Kansas a member of Safe Kids Worldwide, a global network of organizations whose mission is to prevent accidental childhood injury. The lead agency for Safe Kids Kansas is the Kansas Department of Health and Environment.

Visit us at www.safekidskansas.org and on Facebook.