HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - As summer looms, temperatures are going up around the south. Already in Virginia, two infants have been found dead in a hot car, and it's almost certain more children will die this summer the preventable way.
WAFF 48 invited HEMSI Chief Operations Officer Don Webster and Medical Director Dr. Sherrie Squyres to our studios Tuesday morning to talk about the issue.
We asked what can be done if you see a child suffering in a hot car in a parking lot. Webster says the first thing you need to do is call 911. "At that time, they will give them directions to possibly break out the window, try to retrieve the person. The dispatcher knows where they're coming from."
Dr. Squyers says you need to think about the heat from someone else's point of view sometimes. While a healthy adult is able to tolerate the high temperatures in most cases, others cannot. "The very young and very old are most susceptible to any sort of heat-related injury, and that's why especially with kids being left in the car like that, it heats up very, very quickly and people don't realize how fast that can happen."
For more help on how to recognize and treat heat-related illness, click here to visit the Mayo Clinic.
"It's like an incubator," Webster says. "With the windows rolled up, temperatures can go up 10-15 degrees in just a short period of time and inhaling that heat, it's detrimental to the child, or elderly person."
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