Protecting kids from heatstroke, especially young children, needs to be discussed with the entire family and any caregivers. A young child is particularly at risk because their bodies heat up three to five times faster than an adult’s. The 938 children that have died from pediatric vehicular heatstroke in the United States (1998 – 2022) have ranged in age from 5 days to 14 years old. The majority (54%) were under the age of two years old. In more than half of these hot car deaths, the caregiver forgot the child was in the car. A car can heat up 19 degrees in just 10 minutes and cracking a window doesn’t help.
Reduce the number of deaths from heatstrokes by remembering to ACT
Avoid HeatstrokeAvoid heatstroke–related injury and death by never leaving a child alone in a car, not even for a minute. And make sure to keep your car locked when you're not inside so kids don't get in on their own.
Create RemindersKeep a stuffed animal or other memento in your child's car seat when it's empty, and move it to the front seat as a visual reminder when your child is in the back seat. Or, place and secure your phone, briefcase, or purse in the backseat when traveling with your child. Wear the Look Before You Lock bracelet to have a visual reminder the child is locked in a car seat.
Take ActionIf you see a child alone in a car, call 911.
Emergency personnel want you to call.
They are trained to respond to these situations.
Look Before You Lock – Bracelet Reminder System
- The Look Before You Lock - Bracelet Reminder System is a way to help increase awareness about heatstroke.
- Parents and caregivers should wear the bracelet each and every time their child is in the backseat.
- As you place the child in the car seat and buckle, put on the bracelet.
- When you unlock the child and take them in your arms, place the bracelet around the lock– in the same place- in the vehicle.
- Develop a routine that if the baby is locked in the car as a passenger, then the bracelet is on. If the child is unlocked and removed the bracelet stays with the car seat.
Parents and Safety Partners can obtain the Look Before You Lock bracelets for free by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.