Heatstroke: Desperate Warnings About Children Left In Hot Cars

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car-oven-hotSo far in 2013 there have been at least twenty-one deaths of children unattended in vehicles; thirteen which has been confirmed as heatstroke and eight which, based upon the known circumstances, are most likely heatstroke (2013 list).  Last year there were at least thirty-three deaths of children (see 2012 list) due to hyperthermia (heatstroke) after being left in or having gained access to hot cars, trucks, vans and SUV’s.  Since 1998 there have been at least 582 documented cases of heatstroke deaths of children in vehicles.  This study shows that these incidents can occur on days with relatively mild (i.e., ~ 70 degrees F) temperatures and that vehicles can reach life-threatening temperatures very rapidly.

STATISTICS

  • Total number of U.S. heatstroke deaths of children left in cars, 2013: 21
  • Total number of U.S. heatstroke deaths of children left in cars, 2012:  33
  • Total number of U.S. heatstroke  deaths of children left in cars, 1998-present:  582
  • Average number of U.S. child heatstroke fatalities per year since 1998: 37
  • See Monthly Statistics
  • See Per Capita Deaths by State
  • Circumstances
    • An examination of media reports about the 561 child vehicular heatstroke deaths for an thirteen year period (1998 through 2012) shows the following circumstances:
      • 52% – child “forgotten” by caregiver (288 Children)
      • 29% – child playing in unattended vehicle (163)
      • 18% – child intentionally left in vehicle by adult  (101)
      • 2% – circumstances unknown (9)
  • Ages

    Children who have died from vehicular heatstroke in the United States (1998-2012) have ranged in age from 5 days to 14 years.  More than half of the deaths are children under 2 years of age.  Below are the percentage of total deaths (and the number of deaths) sorted by age.

    • Less than 1 year old = 31% (171)
    • 1-year old = 22% (123)
    • 2-years old = 20% (109)
    • 3-years old = 14% (78)
    • 4-years old = 6% (33)
    • 5-years old = 3% (17)
    • 6-years old = 2% (9)
    • 7-years old = < 1% (2)
    • 8-years old = 1% (3)
    • 9-years old = < 1% (2)
    • 10-years old = 1% (3)
    • 11-years old = < 1% (2)
    • 12-years old = < 1% (1)
    • 13-years old = < 1% (1)
    • 14-years old = < 1% (2)
    • Unknown = < 1% (2)

Read more here.

{Matzav.com Newscenter}

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