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It seems like every day we hear about a child being left in a hot car. What steps
can be taken to prevent this from happening?
Nashville, Ark. – It seems like every day we hear about a child being left in a hot
car. According to KidsAndCars.org, a child dies every nine days from heat stroke after
being left in the car. How can this be possible?
You are probably saying, “I would never do that.” “This only happens with
terrible parents.” However, most the hot car deaths that occur each year are of children
who were forgotten in the car, or who got in without their parent’s or caregiver’s
knowledge and got trapped. All it takes is for you to be out of your routine. You
get busy and distracted and as bad as it sounds, you forget.
There are other situations that can happen. A young child might sneak
out to play in a car, accidentally locking themselves inside, or often parents will
step out of the car briefly because they do not want to wake a sleeping infant. Both
situations can be potentially devastating when young children are involved. It takes
less than 20 minutes for a car to heat up to more than 120 degrees. On a hot summer
day, like the ones we have had lately, it takes even less time.
Children sweat and overheat, just like an adult in a hot place. As their
body temperature rises, their systems can’t regulate their temperature anymore, and
they will feel dizzy, sluggish, disoriented and may have seizures. They will stop
sweating and eventually lose consciousness. When they reach 107 degrees Fahrenheit,
their bodies start to shut down, and they will have permanent damage or die very quickly.
This happens within just a few minutes, especially for babies.
The younger the child, the faster heatstroke can occur, anywhere from
three to five times faster than an adult. Small bodies are not as good as regulating
their body temperature. This puts them at risk of heat stroke in a very brief time
in a hot car.
Despite the high number of car-related heat deaths each year, it can be
prevented. How? Look before you lock! If you care for young children, make it a habit
of always checking the backseat. Never leave a child in the car unattended. You may
think you’re only going for a second, and the leaving the windows cracked or open
will be enough. It’s not. It’s like putting the child in an oven.
Other tips for preventing leaving a child in the car include:
No one wants to cause injury to a child, especially heat stroke from being
left in a hot car. Take extra care to ensure the safety of your precious cargo!
For more information on summertime safety, contact the Howard County Extension
Service at 870-845-7517 or visit our office located on the second floor of the courthouse.
Here is a great salad recipe that was prepared at the recent Mediterranean
Diet Cooking School. It uses lots of fresh produce and is delicious!
¾ pound tomatoes, seeded, diced (about 2 cups)
2 cups diced seeded peeled cucumber (about 1 large)
1 cup diced red bell pepper (about 1 large)
¼ cup pitted Kalamata olives or other black olives, halved
¼ cup diced red onion
3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ tablespoons red wine vinegar
½ teaspoon dried oregano
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese (about 2 ounces)
Toss first 9 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Gently mix in cheese.
Season with salt and pepper. Makes about 4 ½ cups (8 servings)
*Note can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature a few minutes before
serving. Goes great with kebabs.
Nutrition Information per Serving: Calories-85, Fat-7g, Carbohydrates-5g, Fiber-1
g, Protein-2 g, Sodium-96 mg. High in Vitamin C!
By Jean Ince County Extension Agent - Staff ChairThe Cooperative Extension ServiceU of A System Division of Agriculture
Media Contact: Jean Ince County Extension Agent - Staff Chair U of A Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service 421 N. Main St, Nashville AR 71852 (870) 845-7517 email@example.com
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action institution. If you require a reasonable accommodation to participate or need
materials in another format, please contact your County Extension office (or other
appropriate office) as soon as possible. Dial 711 for Arkansas Relay. The Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service offers its programs to all eligible persons
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