Summer Road Safety Tips For Drivers With Kids At Home

During the summer, the temperature inside a closed vehicle can be lethal. If it’s 32°C outside, the temperature inside a car can go from 26-55°C in less than 15 minutes. To put this into perspective, the hottest day on record in Canada was 45°C.

Extreme summer heat can cause heat stroke in infants and small children far more quickly and dramatically than in adults —they simply aren’t able to regulate their temperature as well. According to, which tracks hot car deaths in North America, roughly 38 kids die in hot cars every year.

It may surprise you to learn that this doesn’t just happen to careless or negligent people. It can happen to anyone. Here’s why.

How Do Hot Car Deaths Actually Happen?

Most of us are under the misconception that tragedies involving children in hot cars only happen to careless or negligent parents who aren’t aware of the danger. This is not the case; the majority of heat stroke fatalities in hot cars happen when:

  • a competent but overwhelmed caregiver forgets the child is in the car, a condition known as “Forgotten Baby Syndrome”

  • a child gets into an unlocked car without the driver’s knowledge and gets locked in

  • a child gets into an unlocked car on their own —in a driveway, garage or elsewhere —and can’t get out

What Is “Forgotten Baby Syndrome”?