SAN ANGELO, Texas- West Texas is known for its triple-digit heat in the summer, and as the season gets underway, a reminder to never leave your child or pet in a hot car.
“You always want to make sure your child is cold in the backseat when you get out of the vehicle. Also, make sure that the doors are not going to lock when you get out so you have enough time to get the child out of the backseat,” said Officer Kelsey Hernandez with the San Angelo Police Department.
Angelo Lockout Specialist Jim Ryan tells us when a child or pet is left in a vehicle their body temperature can quickly rise in less than 10 minutes.
“It can get up to 120 degrees inside a car depending on where it’s parked,” added Ryan.
When a car reaches 107 degrees a child or pet will experience a heat stroke and the situation turns critical.
“You want to make a mental note of the time frame and how long that child has been in the vehicle especially if the vehicle is not running,” said Officer Hernandez. “This way we know if we immediately need to break the window or if we have time to wait on a locksmith.”
“It usually takes us about 10 minutes to get to a call and then less than a minute to unlock the vehicle,” said Ryan.
The most important thing to do in this type of situation is to stay relaxed so that your baby or pet can follow suit.
“What I tell the moms to do is try to stay calm and to call 911 right away. Don’t wait for the good samaritans to try and get the vehicle open,” said Ryan.
A tip to remember when getting out of the car this summer is to always look before you lock. You can even leave something important in the back seat like your purse or cellphone so you’re more likely to open the back door.