Heat stroke is the primary cause of death in children under the age of 15 in a non-crash, car-related death.
A 5-year-old boy died after being left in a hot car for hours in Harris County, Texas.
He was left in the vehicle by his mother for, "several hours," as she prepared for his older sister's birthday party, reports PEOPLE. According to Thomas M. Gilliland, a senior deputy with the Harris County Sheriff's Office, the youngster was declared dead in the family's driveway when Emergency Medical Services arrived.
He said, "Homicide and Child Crimes-investigators were notified and responded to the scene. The case is still open and active, and investigators will meet with the Harris County District Attorney's Office to present their findings of the investigation." The identity of the child and the mother is being kept anonymous and Gilliland didn't revel if the mother will face any charges.
Hot temperatures turned tragic in Houston on Monday when Texas authorities say a 5-year-old boy died after being left in a car as temperatures topped 100 degrees. @mikebettes of the @weatherchannel has more on what you can to do protect yourself. pic.twitter.com/V4Kto8gYA3— CBS Evening News (@CBSEveningNews) June 21, 2022
The boy went to a store with his mother and elder sister, 8, to shop for the celebration. However, upon returning home, the mother and the daughter got out of the car but the boy remained buckled inside. The family realized that he wasn't inside the home several hours later, according to County Sheriff Ed Gonzelz. Investigators discovered that the youngster knew how to unbuckle himself and exit the vehicle, which the mother may have assumed. As a result, she went inside to get ready for the party, reports KTRK.
It wasn't until she called for the youngster two or three hours later that she realized where her son was. Gonzalez further said that the family was driving a rental car while their own vehicle was being repaired, and that the child may not have been familiar with the rental's locking features. According to the sheriff, the car's doors were not equipped with any type of child safety lock.
Authorities say a 5-year-old boy has died after being left in a vehicle in the Houston area as his mother prepared for a birthday partyhttps://t.co/CyLX8esnLh— NewsChannel 5 (@NC5) June 21, 2022
Around 3:19 p.m., officers were alerted to the incident and the boy was declared dead upon the arrival of the authorities.
According to Texas Health and Human Services, "Hyperthermia, heatstroke, or hot car deaths are terms that describe the condition in which a body gets so hot that it can no longer cool itself. " Heat stroke is the primary cause of death in children under the age of 15 in a non-crash, car-related death. As per the Texas law, if a person deliberately or knowingly leaves a kid in a motor vehicle for more than five minutes with the knowledge that the youngster is less than the age of 7, they are committing a crime.
Children dying in hot cars is 💯 preventable.— nhtsagov (@NHTSAgov) June 2, 2022
❌ Never leave a child in a car alone.
👁️ Always check the back seat.
🔒 Lock unattended vehicles doors.#HeatstrokeKills #CheckForBaby pic.twitter.com/ogZtReWo2A
Representative Image Source: Getty Images/Richard Newstead