It can happen to anyone. A child dies in a vehicle after being locked inside. This tragedy typically occurs when a parent or caregiver makes a change in their routine. The parent that normally drives the child to their activities has a schedule change, causing the other parent to take over the chauffer responsibility. When someone is not accustomed to handling this responsibility, a lapse in memory can occur. Depending on the weather conditions, a child locked in a vehicle may experience hypothermia or heat stroke.
Pop-A-Lock, founded in 1991 by law enforcement officers, developed a program that rescues children in locked vehicles 24/7. Since the program began, thousands of children have been rescued from across the U.S. at no charge to families or caregivers. The PAL Saves Kids program focuses on prevention and education—not blame.
Here are some tips to help prevent children from being locked in a vehicle.
- Keep your child’s favorite toy, blanket, or diaper bag in the front seat.
- Place your purse or briefcase in the backseat causing you to go to the back to retrieve them.
- Stay off the phone! Keep your focus on driving to the caregiver.
- If you don’t arrive to the caregiver by a certain time, have them call you to find out where you are.
- If someone other than yourself is bringing the child to your caregiver, call them at a designated time to ensure delivery.