Hot weather: Police warn against leaving children, pets in hot cars

Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 3:12 PM EDT
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HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - Warmer days are upon us in the Commonwealth and police warn leaving children and pets in hot cars is not just dangerous, it’s criminal.

“It only takes just minutes for a car to go from a comfortable 70 degrees to well over 120 degrees. Especially when the temperature outside is over 70 degrees Fahrenheit,” said Hazard Police Department Deputy Chief, James East.

This can cause serious harm to anyone, but especially young children, elderly dependents and animals.

“Unfortunately, every summer we get calls of either a child left in a car or an animal left in a car. When we get them, we respond accordingly,” said East.

Harm coming to the child or pet is what will lead to criminal charges. Those charges mainly come in two classifications, misdemeanor and felony.

“The difference between a misdemeanor charge and felony charge is mostly with intent, or the recklessness of it,” East added.

According to police, the recommendation to staying safe and avoiding charges is simple.

“Don’t leave your child in the car under any circumstances for any length of time,” he said.

Police add that if you see a child or an animal stuck in a hot car that you should call police. If the child appears to be in trouble, do whatever it takes to get the child to safety.

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