Leaving children in car often a deadly decision - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Leaving children in car often a deadly decision

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The temperature inside a car can rise 20 degrees in a mere 10 minutes, and that can be devastating to a child. (Source: CNN) The temperature inside a car can rise 20 degrees in a mere 10 minutes, and that can be devastating to a child. (Source: CNN)

(CNN) - Children accidentally being left in hot cars is a real issue, as seen in the news recently. And it's one with oftentimes deadly consequences.

“Never leave your child alone in the car even for a minute, whether they're in a car seat or not,” said Dr. James Fortenberry of Children's Healthcare of Atlanta.

The temperature inside a car can rise 20 degrees in a mere 10 minutes, and that can be devastating to a child.

“An infant doesn't tolerate heat as well as an adult and so their cells can be injured,” Fortenberry said.

Injuries can be serious, even deadly. In fact, the organization kidsandcars.org said that on average, in the past 15 years, there have been 38 such fatalities annually in the U.S. alone.

Experts agree these tragedies are preventable and offer tips to all parents and caregivers.

“A good reminder- visual reminder - might be to take that child's stuffed animal and have it in the front seat next to you,” he said. “You may want to bring your purse or laptop computer and put it next to baby's carseat.”

Whatever you do, never leave a child, “not even to run into the store, to run back into the house, you never know what's going to happen,” Fortenberry said.

Copyright 2014 CNN. All rights reserved.

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