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Intermountain Health Primary Children’s Safety Experts Say Never Leave A Child or Pet in a Car

According to safety experts, the interior of a car can heat up rapidly, even in mild weather, and can quickly become deadly.

(PRUnderground) May 26th, 2024

Safety specialists at Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital are warning drivers to never leave a child or pet alone in a car, not even for a moment, to avoid the risk of injury or death from heatstroke.

Karlee Kump, community health program manager at Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital, said, “Even in spring, the inside of your vehicle can heat up very quickly. An outside temperature in the mid-60’s can cause a car’s inside temperature to rise above 110 degrees Fahrenheit.”

Hot car tragedies can happen to anyone. A child’s body temperature can increase three to five times faster than an adult’s. Every year, nearly 40 children across the country die after being left in a hot vehicle.  In Utah, 13 children have died in hot vehicles between 1998 and 2022, and others have suffered injuries in close calls. Additionally, nearly 3 in 10 heatstroke deaths happen when an unattended child gains access to a vehicle.

Tragedies can occur when a caretaker forgets a child is in the car. This can be due to fatigue or change of routine – common for families during summer break and vacations – that push a person’s brain into autopilot, making it easier to forget. Cracking a window has very little effect on the temperature inside the car.

Here are some tips to prevent hot-car injuries:

  • Always check the back seat before leaving your vehicle.
  • Keep your vehicle locked and keys out of reach of children to prevent them from getting trapped inside.
  • Never leave a child unattended in a vehicle, even for a short time.
  • Use a visual reminder in the front seat, such as a stuffed animal or diaper bag, to remember that a child is in the car with you.
  • Place an item you’ll need at your destination, such as your phone or purse, in the back seat to ensure you check for the child.
  • If a child is missing, check all vehicles, including the trunk, immediately.
  • If you see a child alone in a car, call the police or 911.

Injury prevention is part of Intermountain Health’s more than $600 million Primary Promise to create the nation’s model health system for children. This historic campaign is a partnership between Intermountain Health and its communities, and has raised more than $500 million to date.

For more information about child safety and injury prevention, visit

About Intermountain Health

Headquartered in Utah with locations in seven states and additional operations across the western U.S., Intermountain Health is a nonprofit system of 33 hospitals, 385 clinics, medical groups with some 3,900 employed physicians and advanced care providers, a health plans division called Select Health with more than one million members, and other health services. Helping people live the healthiest lives possible, Intermountain is committed to improving community health and is widely recognized as a leader in transforming healthcare by using evidence-based best practices to consistently deliver high-quality outcomes at sustainable costs. For more information or updates, see

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