As temperatures rose into triple-digit numbers across the nation last week, so did the warnings about leaving children in hot vehicles.
It's a tragedy that occurs every year but can easily be prevented, said Kate Carr, president and CEO of Safe Kids Worldwide.
Two years ago, 50 children were killed from heat exhaustion while being left inside a vehicle, Carr said. The number dropped to 33 last year, but it's a number Carr wants to see go down to zero.
"It's a totally preventable injury," Carr said. "So far this year, six children have been killed. That's six too many."
Carr said over half of the fatalities occur when a parent accidentally leaves a child in the car doing something that isn't part of their daily routine.
"A lot of people say, 'How could that happen?' When your day has changed somewhat, your brain locks into the normal routine, and they forget," Carr said.
Depending on the state and the situation, parents and caregivers can be charged with child endangerment and manslaughter, even if the kids are left unintentionally.
An Associated Press 10-year analysis showed that in the 310 fatalities that occurred from children dying from hyperthermia after being trapped in a vehicle, charges are filed in half the cases.
Sometimes parents intentionally leave their children in the car to run a quick errand. But in the heat waves the country's been seeing recently, a car's temperature in an asphalt parking lot can climb 20 degrees every 10 minutes.
In addition to the quickly rising heat, children's bodies heat up much faster than an adult's, Carr said. Children's internal systems are not fully developed, so they don't sweat as much and absorb heat faster.
Carr said that once the child's body temperature reaches 104 degrees, their internal organs begin to shut down. At 107 degrees, a child dies.
Safe Kids Worldwide launched a campaign that passes on the message to parents to never leave children alone in the car, not even for a minute. Parents and caregivers should be mindful that it's not just an issue for states with typical warm climates, or for the summer months of June, July and August. These fatalities are recorded 11 months of the year in almost every single state, Carr said.
"This is something to be aware of all the time," she said.
Travel hazards, delays and disruptions associated with rain, ice and snow will continue over the Central states through the balance of the Thanksgiving weekend.
The current reprieve from heavy rain across southern India will not last long with the threat for flooding downpours set to return for the final days of November.
Sandra has rapidly weakened to a tropical storm but will continue to bring heavy rainfall into western Mexico on Saturday.
Heavy thunderstorms will continue to shift northward across central South America with the greatest threat for flooding focusing on northeastern Argentina and eastern Paraguay into Saturday morning.
Several days of heavy rain will bring the potential for significant flooding from the southern Plains to the middle Mississippi Valley into early next week.
Snow and ice storms have taken aim at the Central U.S. this week, while record-setting Sandra strengthened into a major hurricane south of Mexico.
New England (1921)
Heavy ice storm in New England with a buildup of over 3 inches. Power lines downed, trees destroyed. Damage totalled $10 million damage.
Lake Superior (1960)
A severe lake storm along the north shore of Lake Superior: waves 20-40 feet high, wind gust to 73 mph. Floods and waves caused structural damage.
Goodland, KS (1983)
19 inches of snow on the ground with drifts of up to 8 feet.