By: Francisco Diaz, The Laredo Sun
LAREDO, TX. - Incredibly, the national annual average of deaths of infants who are locked in cars is 38 since 1998 and according to a study of San Francisco State University from 1998 to date, 532 have been killed this way.
Spokesman and Captain for the Fire Department Eloy Vega alerted parents to never leave their children in cars even for a minute because the consequences can be fatal.
"If the temperature is 100 degrees, it can reach 150 inside a car within five minutes. This heat is enough to suffocate a person and a child, causing fatal heat stroke," he said.
He said the heat inside a vehicle operates as an oven and a stove if the car has a sunroof, it can easily reach 200 degrees.
"Leaving a child in a car is unacceptable and it is illegal in Texas, " said Vega.
In Laredo, he said, daily emergencies are recorded to report cases where minors are trapped in cars, usually by accident and rarely by the negligence of adults.
Vega advises the community to ensure their children get off the car and if you notice a child locked in a car, immediately call 911.
The study of San Francisco State University said of the 532 deaths from heat suffocation among infants was recorded between 1998 and 2012. So far, Texas ranks first with 80 deaths.
The state of Florida has 56 cases, California ranks third with 36, then the state of Arizona with 23 and Georgia comes in fifth with 20 deaths.
In the first five months of 2012, there have been five recorded deaths of infants.
Of the 532 deaths in nearly 15 years, 160 were children under one year, 121 were infants, 108 had two years, 68 deaths were three years, 31 had four years, 15 were children five years and the rest between 6 and 14 years of age.
To avoid these cases, authorities recommend that adults make sure that all passengers in the car get off.
Number of deaths of children from suffocation inside vehicles in the U.S.