This week there have been two cases in Northeast Florida of a parent being arrested for locking a child in a hot car. The Florida Department of Children and Families tells WOKV News they’re investigating both cases, as well as continuing efforts to educate parents.
“These are highly preventable deaths,” says John Harrell with DCF. “Parents have gotta see the danger of this, and they’ve gotta see that they can be held criminally liable, and they could lose their child when it comes to death from heat stroke. Those hot cars can turn into ovens in the heat.”
It is also against Florida law to leave a child unattended in a vehicle.
Harrell says over the past few years, DCF has been producing PSA’s that dramatically illustrate the danger of leaving kids in cars. They’ve done social networking and partnerships with billboard and bus companies to spread awareness.
“Ultimately what it comes down to is personally responsibility,” Harrell says. “Parents have gotta take responsibility for their children.”
He says DCF is updating its website with more information regarding concerns about children left in cars, as well as drowning prevention.
CLICK HERE for the new DCF website.
Harrell confirms that DCF is investigating both recent cases of a child being locked in a hot car in Northeast Florida.