New Smartphone Apps Aim to Stop Hot Car Deaths

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(MGN Online)

LOS ANGELES (CBSNEWS) --Thursday is National Heat Stroke Prevention Day a good reminder for parents not to leave their children in hot cars. It's estimated that nearly 40 children die each year in hot cars. That's about one every 9 days.Now new technology has been developed to help prevent these deaths.

Benjamin Seitz died on July 7th. His father forgot to drop him at day care and drove to work leaving the 15 month old in the back seat. Lindsey Rogers-Seitz, Benjamin's mother, says it can happen to anyone.

"You wake up and have normal day and then in the afternoon you find out that your son's gone," Rogers-Seitz said.

Helen Arbogast, SafeKids, says it only takes 10 minutes for the temperature inside a car to jump 20 degrees. In 1 to 2 hours, the temperature can shoot up 50 degrees..

"For children's bodies heat up 3 to 5 times faster than adults bodies," Arbogast said.

Since 1998, there have been 716 child deaths in hot cars. More than half them happened because a child was forgotten. Now there's new technology--like the kars 4 kids and precious cargo apps-- that remind parents to look in the backseat.

This is how the Precious Cargo app works. Before you start moving , you type a note, like..."kids in backseat", set the time, and the app pushes out the alarm"

The app can also pair with bluetooth to send out an alert when the car stops .

"At 104 degrees children's bodies begin to shutdown, at 107 degrees they can die of heat stroke," Arbogast said.

Safety advocates say every time parents drive they should 'look before they lock'.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says more than half the total the deaths of children in hot cars were kids under 2 years old.


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