To prevent children being locked in hot cars, RACV is appealing to all parents and carers to adopt safe behaviours this summer.
In 2023 RACV Emergency Roadside Assistance (ERA) patrols received 664 calls to help rescue children accidentally locked in vehicles.
RACV Head of Policy James Williams said cabin temperatures can more than double in hotter months, even if a car is in the shade.
“Tests conducted by RACV have shown that vehicle interiors can reach more than 70 degrees Celsius in just minutes when the outside temperature is only 30 degrees Celsius,” Mr Williams said.
‘When you factor in the increased vulnerability that children have to heat, dehydration and heatstroke, being stuck inside a car on a hot day is a very dangerous proposition.”
RACV is advising parents and carers to follow these steps to avoid accidentally locking keys in the car with a child inside:
- Wind windows down before putting children in the car in case the car automatically locks. Once you are driving, it is recommended to wind them back up.
- Never give your keys to children to play with.
- Avoid distractions when loading your car.
- Find an easy way to hold on to your keys such as a lanyard or clip.
If a child is accidentally locked in the car, parents and carers should:
- Call 13 11 11 immediately for RACV emergency roadside assistance.
- Call 000 immediately for life threatening emergencies.
- Keep calm but act quickly.
“It is so easy to get distracted as people are going about their normal daily routine. If carers can adopt a safe mindset and behaviours, we can hopefully all enjoy a safe summer,” Mr Williams said.
Find out more via RACV's check keys – check kids campaign.
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