UAE: 6 ways leaving children unattended in vehicles could prove fatal

Police have issued an advisory about the practice



by

Sahim Salim

Published: Tue 30 Aug 2022, 11:57 AM

Last updated: Tue 30 Aug 2022, 6:16 PM

A recent incident in the UAE about a child left behind in a car as his parent went shopping has once again highlighted the dangers of the practice. The police managed to rescue the two-year-old who was found strapped on to a child seat.

Fortunately, the child was in a good health condition, but officers stressed how he could have even died due to suffocation.

Despite authorities issuing warnings time and again about the dangers of the practice, parents continue doing it.

Earlier this month, the Dubai Police said officers had rescued 36 children from locked vehicles since the beginning of the year. The force warned parents and motorists about the “deadly consequences” of leaving children unattended inside vehicles. The police have urged parents to double-check that they have not left a child behind accidentally or deliberately as they run errands.

Here are the different ways the practice could prove fatal:

>> Temperatures could reach 70°C in locked vehicles: The Dubai Police had highlighted recently how temperatures can reach up to 70°C in parked vehicles during the hot weather.

>> Suffocation, heat stroke: Child safety experts have repeatedly highlighted how leaving or forgetting children inside a vehicle in extreme hot conditions could lead to heatstroke and suffocation. This could even cause death in less than 10 minutes.

>> Kids could experiment with vehicle controls: Some parents think it is okay to leave the child in the car with the AC switched on. However, children are experimental by nature and could play around with the steering wheel or accelerator.

>> Children could get locked in: As was the case in the incident highlighted by the Federal Public Prosecution on Tuesday, doors could get automatically locked if parents leave the vehicle. In this case, the mother had left the key inside the car as she stepped out and the doors locked automatically.

>> Kids could climb out of the window: Even if you crack open a window while you go shopping, children could roll them down further and climb out to disastrous consequences.

>> Unlocked vehicles parked in compounds are dangerous, too: Authorities have recorded instances of kids locking themselves inside cars parked in their home compound while playing. Butti Al Falasi, director of the Security Awareness Department at Dubai Police, said: "We urge parents and guardians not to leave their vehicles easily accessible and unlocked for children, so they don’t climb into it and lock themselves inside.”

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