It’s hot out there. And it’s even hotter in your car.
Police are urging parents to triple check the backseat before heading into work after another distressed and dehydrated toddler was found locked in a hot car in Sydney.
Sydney Police had to smash through the window of a Kia Carnival to rescue the tot on Thursday. He was rushed to a nearby hospital while police searched for his missing parents.
‘It’s your worst nightmare’
It is believed the tot was locked in the car for three hours after his dad accidentally forget to drop him off at daycare.
“It was a rough night,” the father told reporters. “I went to drop off my kid at the school; he fell asleep in the car. I thought I had dropped him off and I went to work.
It’s a disaster, I hope that it doesn’t happen to any other parent. It’s your worst nightmare.”
The little boy, believed to be two or three, was discovered at 11.15am on Thursday, 18 January 2018. Temperatures in the area rose to 25°C at 11am, but in-car temperatures can be much higher, especially on a summer day. In other parts of the country, temperatures reached 50c in the middle of the day on Thursday.
RACV tests show that on a 30°C day, the temperature inside a car can rise to 70°C in a matter of minutes.
Alarming rate of children left in hot cars during heatwave
However, this isn’t the only instance of a child needing rescuing. Yesterday alone, there were nine reports of children left in parked cars. And this was only in one state – Victoria.
“That’s nine too many,” Chief Health Officer Charles Guest says. “We know that leaving children in parked cars can lead to death.”
Every year in Australia, over 5000 children are rescued after being left unattended in a car. This equates to 13 kids each and every day!
Why does this keep happening?
We know it’s not a good idea to leave your little one in a hot car. But it keeps happening. Over and over again.
Sometimes it’s simply a case of a parent accidentally locking the car while loading the groceries. In other more distressing instances, like the story above, a tired parent has accidentally left their little one in the car. And for several hours.
Late last year an eight-year-old Melbourne boy was found unconscious and in critical condition after hiding in the back of his mum’s car for six hours. The temperature reached 30°C in Melbourne that day.
With temperatures set to top 40°C in some areas in Victoria and South Australia today, please, parents, triple check the back seat of your car. EVERY. Single. Time.
For more information on car safety during summer, have a read of our recent heatwave safety guide.