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Every year, dogs and children suffer and die when their guardians make the mistake of leaving them in a parked car. Hot vehicles are death traps for dogs: On a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to 100 degrees in just minutes, and on a 90-degree day, the interior temperature can reach as high as 109 degrees in less than 10 minutes.
This summer alone, more than 37 children have died in hot cars, and there have been at least 870 documented cases in which kids died in hot vehicles since 1990. Already this year, at least 39 dogs experienced an agonizing death in a hot car and at least 70 more were rescued just in time. These numbers include only those incidents reported in the media—so the actual figures are likely higher.
The Helping Kids Overcome Trauma for Children Alone in Rear Seats (HOT CARS) Act of 2017 (H.R. 2801/S.1666) aims to minimize these deaths by requiring automakers to equip all cars with technology that alerts drivers when a passenger remains in the back seat after the engine is turned off.
In June 2017, H.R. 2801 was introduced by representatives Tim Ryan (D-Ohio), Peter T. King (R-N.Y.), and Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.). On July 31, 2017, a companion bill (S.1666) was introduced in the Senate by Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.). Sen. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) has also signed on as a cosponsor.
Sadly, since the bill was introduced, over 60 children have died in hot cars—and there will certainly be more in the months ahead. These deaths can be prevented.
With your help, we can get this legislation passed!
Please send a polite e-mail to your senator or congressperson urging him or her to support the bipartisan HOT CARS Act of 2017.
You're welcome to use our template letter, but remember that putting your subject line and message into your own words will help draw attention to your e-mail.