Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

Local News

June 26, 2013

HEALTH: Hot cars and kids don’t mix

JACKSONVILLE — Every year, an average of 38 children die from heat-related deaths after being trapped inside a vehicle, but it's a tragedy that can be avoided through mindful preparation.

“If it's 100 degrees outside, it can get up to 140 degrees inside a (closed) vehicle,” said Cherokee County Extension Agent Wendi Green. “And because a child's body heats up three to five times faster than an adults, it doesn't take but for a few minutes for it to become very dangerous for a child inside that closed vehicle.”

What people may not realize, she added, is that “the way windows are made, (the glass) makes it act like an oven inside,” heating up the interior more quickly than thought possible.

According to the website kidsandcars.org – which reports that one child dies of vehicular heat stroke every nine days, or 38 per year – “several factors contribute to children being inadvertently forgotten” by their care-givers.

Common factors include change in normal routine, lack of sleep, stress, fatigue, distraction and hormone changes. “When these factors combine,” the site states, “the ability or the brain to multi-task is diminished.”

The site reports that in 54 percent of these cases, a child was unknowingly left in the vehicle; 31 percent of the children got inside the vehicle on their own, while nearly 12 percent were knowingly left inside the vehicle.

The largest majority of fatalities – 87 percent – involved children ages 3 and younger, according to kidsandcars.org.

However, Green said there are ways to help cut back those numbers, simple little things that can make a world of difference.

In fact, she said, General Motors Foundation and Safe Kids Worldwide (a global organization dedicated to preventing injuries in children) have launched an education awareness campaign called “Never Leave Your Child Alone in a Car,” designed to help parents and care-givers understand the dangers hot vehicles pose to children.

“The campaign encourages everyone to ACT,” says a link on the safekids.org website :

•  A – “Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. Always lock doors and trunks – even in your driveway. And keep keys and keyfobs out of the reach of kids.”

• C – “Create reminders. Place something you'll need at your next stop … next to the child safety seat. It may seem simple, but it can be a helpful reminder on a chaotic day.”

• T – “Take action. If you see a child alone in a car, take action. Call 911. Emergency personnel are trained to respond to these situations.”

Green reminded parents to also educate the people they entrust as their children's care-givers, “especially young teens who are young drivers who may not be aware of this,” she said.

However, the simplest way to protect your child is to leave them at home if you are able, she said. “Especially young babies, who are three to five times more likely (to succumb to heatstroke),” Green said. “Or take an adult with you and keep the vehicle running so that they're safe inside, where it's cool.”

Text Only
Local News
  • THOMPSON, CEDRICK.tif Cherokee County woman found dead

    At approximately 9:35 a.m. Sunday,  Kayla Nicole Thompson, 27, was found deceased in the driveway of her residence, located in the 1500 block of County Road 3201,  just West of Lake Jacksonville.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • BullardFUNRUN.tif Bullard Education Foundation sets record with event

    The Bullard Education Foundation hosted its 4th annual 5K /Fun Run, “Strides for Excellence” on Saturday morning, April 19.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fire destroys Sims Avenue residence

    Jacksonville Fire Department responded to a fire in the 900 block of Sims Avenue early Saturday.

    April 22, 2014

  • Community library on council agenda

    The Bullard City Council will met at 6 p.m. today at Bullard First Baptist Church, 1428 S. Houston, for the regular board meeting.

    April 22, 2014

  • Council to mull election, roads

    The Cuney City Council will meet at 10 a.m. today at the Cuney Municipal Building.

    April 22, 2014

  • Christian Rapper 0419.tif Local rap artist spreads the 411 on Jesus

    "I have seen things in my life that would make Dr. Phil crazy," Jacksonville native, ordained minister and aspiring rap artist Stephen I. Crow Jr. said with a laugh. "That's why I don't label my music specifically as "Christian rap" -- yes, Christians who love rap can listen and hopefully be uplifted, but I truly want and am trying to bring the word and Jesus' message to people who may never have heard it or don't believe it's for them.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tomato Bowl flushed to bottom of priorities

    The historic Tomato Bowl, built in 1940, stands strong on the outside, but according to some people the inside needs a lot of work in order to not be an eyesore.

    April 19, 2014

  • Cherokee County arrest: April 8-14

    The Daily Progress will publish a list of arrests from the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office on a weekly basis.

    April 19, 2014

  • Jacksonville College, high schools team up to offer dual credit program

    Jacksonville College is currently offering qualifying high school juniors and seniors attending Jacksonville and New Summerfield ISDs and The Brookhill School in Bullard the opportunity to get head start on their higher education.

    April 18, 2014

  • JISD board members to consider district strategic plan

    The Jacksonville ISD Board of Trustees will meet at 6:30 p.m. Monday, April 21, to discuss a district strategic plan and consider buying new band uniforms.

    April 18, 2014