First responders warn about hot car dangers

Public asked to be alert

ORMOND BEACH, Fla. – Outside Ormond Beach Fire Station #92, first responders demonstrated what happens when a child is left unattended inside a hot car. 

"Everyone thinks this can't happen to them," Halifax Health emergency physician Dr. Peter Springer said. "But it does happen. All it takes is a little lapse in judgement and a little lapse in memory."

In 2019 so far, seven children have died in the United States after being left inside a hot car, including two instances in Florida. 

Last month, a 1-year-old boy died after his mother left him alone in a hot car several times during a two-day time period, including once for more than four hours, while she obtained drugs, according to Melbourne police.

First responders say a vehicle's temperature can rise 19 degrees in just 10 minutes. 

Ormond Beach Fire Department Battalion Chief Tom Bazanos sees this happening more often than you think, which is why he's asking people to be alert. 

"If it's serious or they believe it could be serious, they can take action themselves...," he said. 

The event was organized with the Safe Kids Volusia Flagler Coalition, Halifax Health and the current Ormond Beach Chamber Leadership Class. 

"This event demonstrates the power of partnership across agencies," said Steve Parris, Safe Kids Volusia/Flagler Coalition Coordinator led by Halifax Health, in a news release. "Everyone involved, from the Chamber to our first responders, recognizes the need to be proactive on heatstroke awareness, because these tragedies are 100 percent preventable. That's why we're calling on everyone to work together to alert people to the dangers of heatstroke. Whether you are a parent or caregiver, or just a concerned bystander, you can help save lives." 

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