Heat stroke, or hyperthermia, can occur if a child is left unattended in a vehicle, whether intentionally for a quick errand or unintentionally if there is a break in routine, a parent or caregiver is distracted, or children are playing unsupervised in a vehicle. Children are particularly susceptible to heat stroke because their bodies heat up five times faster than an adult’s, so even a mild, 70-degree day can result in pediatric heat stroke.
Sadly, since 1998, there have been 542 documented child deaths due to heat stroke in motor vehicles. Even the most responsible, well-intentioned parent can make a mistake, but there are simple steps you can take to ensure your child does not fall victim to heat stroke:
Please visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Safe Kids USA websites for more tips, tools and information on pediatric heat stroke prevention.
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