July 4, 2005
GM campaign warns parents of heat stroke danger to children
Detroit, Michigan – General Motors, Chevrolet and Safe Kids Worldwide are teaming up to raise awareness of the dangers of car temperatures with the Never Leave Your Child Alone information campaign. The difference between even a mild outside temperature and the temperature inside a closed vehicle was the centre-piece of a new display shown at the NASCAR Pepsi 400 race in Daytona Beach, Florida.
Reports show that through June 23 of this year, eight children in the U.S. died from hyperthermia and exposure after being left in closed and locked vehicles. In six cases, they were left in the vehicles by parents or caregivers. In 2004, at least 38 children died when they were left in closed automobiles.
“It is never safe to leave a child unattended in a motor vehicle, even with a window slightly open,” said Martin Eichelberger, M.D., president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide and director of Emergency Trauma Services at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C. “On a sunny day the temperature inside a vehicle can reach deadly levels within minutes.”
The campaign suggests using visual cues and reminders, such as leaving a diaper bag on the front seat or putting a briefcase that will be needed at the destination in the rear seat, to remember that the child is still in the vehicle.