'Good Samaritans' can legally save children in hot cars

Authorities say you should take action to save a child's life if they are trapped in a hot car.

Last year, in the US, 39 children died after being left in hot cars, a sobering reminder this time of the year for parents.

In 90-degree temperatures, a car can heat up to 170 degrees in 30 minutes. State Trooper Melissa Matey says people accidentally leave kids or pets in cars more often than you'd think.

"It usually happens to people with new children or people that don't necessarily bring a specific child to a location, meaning that if it's not something in their daily routine it's possible you can forget the child in the car," Matey said.

State Troopers are asking parents to take precautions to make sure they check the backseat.

"Put your shoe in the backseat or your cellphone or your purse," Matey said. "Something that will remind you that you have a child in the car."

Because here in Southeast Louisiana, it only takes a few minutes for a mistake to turn deadly.

"It happens and it happens very quickly," Matey said.

That means if you see something, you need to do something. State Troopers say “Good Samaritan Laws” protect you, so if you see a child left in a hot car you can do whatever necessary to get the child out. Troopers say to call 911 to let authorities know what's happening and then immediately step in.

"Please break that window because you could be saving that child's life," Matey said.

Already this summer 18 kids have died in hot cars.

© 2017 WWL-TV


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