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Safety Tips

Heatstroke Prevention for Big Kids

A smiling five-year-old in a car seat.

Kids love cars. When they see a parked car, kids can be easily tempted to climb inside to play - without being able to get back out on their own. That puts them at risk for heatstroke, even in cooler temperatures.

Hard Facts about Heatstroke

  • Since 1998, more than 700 children died from heatstroke while left unattended in vehicles. More than a quarter of those deaths happened when the child was playing in an unattended car.
  • A car can heat up 19 degrees in just 10 minutes. And cracking a window doesn’t help.
  • Heatstroke deaths have been recorded every month of the year in nearly all 50 states.  

Top Tips for Preventing Heatstroke

You can reduce the number of child heatstroke tragedies by remembering to ACT:

  1. Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. Always lock your doors and trunks – even in your driveway. And keep your keys and key fobs out of the reach of kids.
  2. Createreminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child such as a briefcase, a purse or a cell phone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important if you’re not following your normal routine.
  3. Take action.If you see a child alone in a car, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call. They are trained to respond to these situations. One call could save a life.

Learn More

It’s important for all parents to know how to protect big kids from heatstroke. Here are some additional tips to help you out.