Chalmers’ dire warning on leaving kids in hot cars

CHILDREN have died from being left alone in cars, yet media reports show parents and caregivers are still ignoring warnings, according to the ACT Children and Young People Death Review Committee and Kidsafe ACT. 

Kidsafe CEO Eric Chalmers says it’s timely to remind parents and caregivers to not leave children in cars in hot weather, as parked cars can reach dangerously high temperatures

“The temperature inside a parked car can be more than 30C hotter than outside the car,” he says.

“That means that on a 30C Canberra summer day, the temperature inside the car can reach over 60C, and the temperature rises quickly”

Chair of the ACT Children and Young people Death Review Committee, Margaret Carmody says the message is clear: never leave children alone in cars.

“Children can quickly suffer dehydration and serious brain injury,” she says.

“In hot conditions children may suffer organ failure and die from heat exhaustion and dehydration if left alone in a hot car.

“Younger children are particularly vulnerable. Parents believe that it is easier to leave their child in the car while they pop to the supermarket or into the service station. However, young children quickly dehydrate and are at risk of suffering serious heat distress. Leaving the window down a few centimetres has little effect and only causes a slight decrease in temperature.”

The Committee advises people to call 000 immediately if they see a child left alone in car in the hot summer weather.


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