A Solution for Hot Car Deaths?
August 5, 2010
We’ve blogged before about hot car deaths -- an all-too-common tragedy that happens when harried moms and dads leave their kids in the back seat, where they overheat and die. We have some safety tips to make sure this doesn't ever happen to you, but don't you wish there was a surefire way to prevent this disaster from even being a possibility for anyone?
Carmakers actually have created alarms that would sound if you left your baby in the car. Nearly 10 years ago GM created a radar sensor that detected a breathing infant left in the back seat. They never sold it though, claiming it wasn't reliable enough. Volvo created another one, but that didn't make it to the market, due to liability reasons.
Recently NASA decided to try its hand at this problem, developing a sensor that you can put under the seat cushion of your baby's car seat that will sound if you get out of the car without your child and walk away 30-50 feet. The device only costs about $50, the technology is ready to go, and similar systems are being developed -- but they're not being built into cars manufactured today.
According to Jeff Rossen of ABC News, safety experts are trying to get language that would require them into a new transportation bill next year. Until then, the National Highway Safety Traffic Administration (NHTSA) encourage parents to “remain vigilant."