Make the call

Published 12:46 am Tuesday, June 7, 2011

It’s that time of year when extremely high temperatures in a vehicle with its windows closed can kill or severely injure a person or a pet.

There should be no need to remind folks to not keep a child, elderly person or pet in a locked car with its windows up. Common sense should tell us not to do that. Unfortunately, some folks don’t use common sense and need reminding.

And don’t think that leaving the vehicle’s engine idling and the air conditioner running means it’s OK to leave someone or a pet in the vehicle. Engines have been know to stop running, and that means the air conditioner isn’t running. Extreme heat in a locked vehicle with its windows up poses an extreme danger.

And the same logic applies in the winter when extremely low temperatures in locked vehicles with their windows up pose lethal danger to people and pets.

According to, 2010 was a record year for children dying as the result of being left in hot cars ą 49 deaths. Since 1998, according to, at least 495 children died after being left in hot cars.

In the past five years, at least 10 children in North Carolina have died from being left in hot cars, according to the N.C. Department of Insurance. Last year, the owner of a day care was sentenced to prison after 16-month-old Jackson Edmonds died from hyperthermia after being left in a hot car.

If those are the numbers for children, what are the numbers for pets?

Anyone who sees a child or a pet left alone in hot car should call 911.

That call could save a life.