We’ve all heard the horror stories. The temperatures in parked cars can reach well over 100 degrees. An NFL player locked himself in his car to see how long he could take the heat, and he only lasted 8 minutes. In just 15 minutes, an infant can die if left in a parked car unattended. There are countless news stories that all say the same thing: don’t leave your kids or pets in a parked car.
Is It Illegal?
Surprisingly, the answer to that question is: no. There is no Idaho law specifically stating that it is illegal to leave your child in a parked car. However, Idaho law states, “Any person who…willfully causes or permits [a] child to be placed in such situation that its person or health is endangered, is punishable by imprisonment…” Leaving a child in a car is proven to be dangerous to the child, even if it’s only for a short time, so it can be illegal.
Leaving a child in a locked car is dangerous because of the extreme temperatures that the interior of a car can reach in a short amount of time. On a day where it’s only 70 degrees outside, a car can get up to 89 degrees in just 10 minutes. In 30 minutes, the interior of the car can get up to 104 degrees. As you can imagine, on days when it’s 90 to 100 degrees outside, the temperature inside the car can get well over 130 degrees in less than 30 minutes. These temperatures are far greater than hot tubs (a max of 104 degrees) and those are meant to be hot.
What Should You Do?
There have been 26 reported deaths just this year from children being left in a car, so do NOT leave your child, pet, or friend in the car, even if it’s in the shade with the windows down.
If you see someone locked in a car, call 911. Find some way to get the person out. Even if they seem perfectly fine, the interior of the car is at least 30 degrees warmer than the exterior. Some states (not Idaho) even have laws where it is legal to break into a car if there is a child locked in the car.
If someone endangers your child or someone you love by locking them in a car for a “quick” errand, make sure to contact Idaho Personal Injury Lawyers today! We offer a free consultation so that we can get you the compensation you deserve.
Photo Courtesy of Pixabay and Daniel Stulphfarrer