Phoenix Fire raises awareness after two babies died in hot cars

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Firefighters are trying to raise awareness about remembering kids after two babies were left in hot cars to die. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Firefighters are trying to raise awareness about remembering kids after two babies were left in hot cars to die. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
A 7-month-old boy died in a hot car in north Phoenix on Friday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) A 7-month-old boy died in a hot car in north Phoenix on Friday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
The Phoenix Fire Department says they are working to re-brand a message to try and raise awareness in order to avert such catastrophes. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) The Phoenix Fire Department says they are working to re-brand a message to try and raise awareness in order to avert such catastrophes. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
They say there are some tips that might help, such as leaving your purse or briefcase in the back seat with your child. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) They say there are some tips that might help, such as leaving your purse or briefcase in the back seat with your child. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

It's been a tragic couple of days. Two babies have died after being left in hot cars.

On Friday, July 28, 2017, a 7-month-old boy died after being accidentally left in a hot car in north Phoenix.

[RELATED: 7-month-old boy dies after being left in a hot car in northeast Phoenix]

He was in the care of his grandparents and police believe the family forgot he was in the car after returning from work.

And on Saturday, the very next day, a 1-year-old boy died after also being forgotten in a car and was found in a church parking lot near 28th Street and Broadway Road.

"These are hard calls," Phoenix Fire Capt. Rob McDade said.

"When you see a lifeless infant still in a car seat and you say to yourself that family tried to do everything right they were in the car seat, working two jobs probably, grandma, grandpa's helping out aunt, uncle, it just breaks your heart," he added.

And in light of these tragedies, the Phoenix Fire Department says they are working to re-brand a message to try and raise awareness in order to avert such catastrophes.

[READ MORE: Baby boy found dead in hot car; 2nd hot car death in two days]

"We're a very proactive fire department. We’re back to the drawing board. We're going to re-brand the message we're gonna do everything we can," McDade said.

They say there are some tips that might help, such as leaving your purse or briefcase in the back seat with your child. But keeping these tragedies that occurred in the back of your head and building your own plan and routine are the most effective things you can do.

"It comes down to you have to be diligent. If you hand off that child to a family member, say, ‘Hey, I'm gonna call you. You text me the minute you get to the house and I want to make sure you have that child’. You check three times in the back,” says McDade. 

[RELATED: ‘Don’t Leave Me Behind!’ vehicular heatstroke campaign goes all digital]

The Phoenix Fire Department tells us the common thread in these types of incidences is some kind of distraction or change from a normal routine, or the child has been left with someone that is not used to having a child in the car with them daily.

This is some information provided by the Phoenix Fire Department:

These hot-car tragedies often occur when there is a change in a driver's routine, stress or a sleeping baby in the back and a parent or caregiver forgets that a child is in the car. Some knowingly leave children "just for a minute," not realizing how quickly the temperature in a car can rise to dangerous levels. Even on a 70-degree day, the inside temperature of a car can exceed 120 degrees even with windows partially open.

[RELATED: Child advocates urge back-seat alarms as 2 die in Arizona]

The Look Before You Lock campaign is a collaborative effort started a couple years ago with The National Fire Safety Council and Consumer Reports. It was founded as a way to help people remember their children in the back seat. Here are more tips to help avert a heartbreaking catastrophe and make sure no child is left behind in a vehicle.

  • Simple rule: Never leave a child unattended in a vehicle, not even for a minute. In addition to being dangerous, it is against the law in many states.
  • Check the car to make sure that all occupants leave the vehicle or are carried out when unloading. If you lock the door with a key, rather than with a remote, it would force that one last look in the car before leaving it.
  • Always lock your car and keep keys and remotes away from children.
  • To serve as a reminder, keep a stuffed animal on the front passenger seat when carrying a child in the backseat.
  • Place something in the backseat that you would need, such as a purse, briefcase or cell phone.
  • Have a plan that your childcare provider will call you if your child does not show up.
  • If you see a child alone in a car, especially if they seem hot, call 911 immediately to help get them out.

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Copyright 2017 KPHO/KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


LiAna EnriquezLiAna Enriquez is a native of Arizona. She attended Marcos de Niza High School in Tempe, Arizona.

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LiAna Enriquez

She then went on to Arizona State University. She graduated summa cum laude from the University’s prestigious, Walter Cronkite School of Journalism with a degree in Journalism/Mass Communications with an emphasis in broadcasting.

LiAna started her news career with KTVK-TV as an intern. She loved it so much she never left! She has been with the station for fourteen years. Currently, she is the consumer investigative producer for Arizona’s top rated consumer segment, 3 On Your Side and is also a general assignment reporter. LiAna also reported for the station’s top rated high school sports show, ‘The Varsity Zone’ for five years.

In her free time LiAna enjoys cooking, watching movies, quading, and traveling. But her absolute favorite thing to do, is to hang out with her husband and beautiful daughters. She is a softball mom. She loves the beach and waterfalls! Her favorite team is the Arizona Cardinals and of course, the Sun Devils.

Life motto: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Philippians 4:13)

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