AUSTIN, Tx (RNN Texoma) - The Department of Public Safety is warning Texans of the dangers of injury or death children can face if left in a vehicle unattended as summer temperatures rise.
Officials say every year children die from heatstroke after being left in a vehicle or entering a vehicle unnoticed. That negligence can lead to criminal charges.
"Children are needlessly dying every year because they are left unattended in vehicles," said DPS Director Steven McCraw. "The public can do their part by notifying emergency personnel if they witness a child alone or in distress inside a vehicle – regardless of the weather conditions."
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, heatstroke is one of the leading causes of deaths among children besides crashes.
NHTSA officials say temperatures inside a vehicle can rise more than 20 degrees in 10 minutes. Even with an outside temperature of 60 degrees, the temperature inside a car can reach 110 degrees.
Officials say to never leave a child unattended in a vehicle. Call 911 if you see a child alone in a car. Teach kids not to play in vehicles and always leave your keys out of reach.