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Toddler Dies In Hot Car Tragedy In Idaho

Investigation underway as temperatures soar in Rathdrum; 12th child to die in hot car this year

RATHDRUM, Idaho — A 2-year-old boy died in northern Idaho Sunday after playing inside a hot family car, according to local authorities.

Idaho State Police are currently investigating the incident and believe the toddler had been playing before he was found by family members in the car. Temperatures in Rathdrum, Idaho, where the incident occurred, had been around 92 degrees Fahrenheit at the time.

“Typically this time of year, afternoon temperatures are in the low to mid-80s,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Tom Kines. “Record high temperatures this time of year are around 102 degrees.”

“This is the 12th child to die in a hot car nationwide and the first in Idaho this year,” said Kids and Car Safety, a nonprofit organization that works to raise awareness of and prevent vehicle-related accidents.

More than 1,050 children under the age of 14 have died in a hot car nationwide, and at least another 7,300 survived with varying types and severities of injuries, according to Kids and Cars Safety.

About 87% of children who die in hot cars are 3 years old or younger, the majority (56%) of whom were unknowingly left by a parent or caregiver.

A car thermometer displays an outside temperature of 102 degrees June 20, 2008 in California. Families should understand that it doesn’t have to be 90 degrees or more outside for a child to suffer from heatstroke inside a vehicle. JUSTIN SULLIVAN/GETTY IMAGES.

Experts have highlighted that cars can heat up within minutes of being closed, and data has shown that 80% of the temperature increase inside a car happens within the first 10 minutes, according to Amber Rollins, director of Kids and Car Safety.

“It’s important for families to understand that it doesn’t have to be 90 degrees outside for a child to suffer from heatstroke inside a vehicle,” said Rollins previously to AccuWeather. “We’ve seen children who have died in hot cars on days when the outside temperature was in the 50s or 60s outside, believe it or not, and that’s because a vehicle does act like a greenhouse, so it allows that heat to come in through the windows, traps it inside, and it’s an oven; it heats up very quickly.”

Produced in association with AccuWeather

Edited by Judy J. Rotich and Newsdesk Manager

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