A day after a three-year-old little boy died in a hot car in Sylmar, groups across the country joined in a social media campaign reminding parents to always check the back seat for their children.
In Panorama City, police and children’s health advocates demonstrated how quickly temperatures can soar in a locked car - 20 degrees in just 10 minutes, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Even in the shade or with the window cracked, temperatures inside the cars soared in the San Fernando Valley summer heat.
“It gets very warm in vehicles and with children, their bodies heat up three to five times that of adults,” said Helen Arbogast of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. “At 104 degrees kids’ organs can shut down and at 107 (degrees) fatality can happen.”
Police say the issue is a real problem. There has already been three preventable deaths of children left in cars in California this year. There are an average of 38 deaths annually of children who die of hyperthermia in cars.
Throughout the day, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration encouraged Twitter and Facebook users to tag in posts about the issue with the hashtags #checkforbaby and #heatstrokekills.
“Our families are so distracted now and there are so many things that are happening that it’s easy for a parent to forget,” Arbogast said.