Accidents are happening all around us and sometimes, we are the unfortunate victims of them. But the truth is, many accidents can be prevented if we just take precaution and implement tactics that are geared toward reducing the chances of them occurring. One common type of accident that we need to become more aware, especially now that we are on the brink of summer, are those involving children and vehicles. Since 1998, approximately 751 children died from heat stroke who were left unattended inside a vehicle. Although the statistics stem back from years ago, the fact is, even one life taken from this type of incident is one too many.
More recent statistics, however, have revealed that nearly 37 children die each year from car-related heatstroke [Source: http://noheatstroke.org. Last July, a seven-month-old died in Phoenix after his grandparents left him in the car in 101° weather [Source: Azcentral]. And just a day later, a one-year-old boy lost his life in 103° weather.
Currently, Mississippi ranks third in the U.S. as one of the top states for vehicular heatstroke deaths.
After hearing about this devastating epidemic that has been taking the lives of innocent children, Erin J. O’Connor, who happens to be a father himself, decided that something needed to be done to stop this. He went on to create an app called Backseat, and it can be downloaded from the App Store onto any smartphone. The app is geared toward preventing a parent or other adult from leaving a child in a hot vehicle.
Here’s how it works:
- When the app is downloaded onto a user’s cell phone, it senses when the car is traveling more than 20mph and sends an alert to confirm whether children are in the car. If kids are present and the driver confirms this, Backseat will then send another reminder once the car stops.
- In the event you ignore the reminder, the app will send half a dozen text messages and emails after six minutes. The alerts will then escalate into a much louder blaring alert with flashing lights regardless of whether your phone is set to vibrate mode.
- If you fail to respond to the reminder, three contacts you designate during the time you setup the app will be notified. Backseat will send your GPS location, make, model, and license plate of the vehicle you registered to these contacts.
Aside from the fact that app is expected to help save lives and prevent a parent or driver from leaving a child inside of a hot car, it is free and accessible to everyone, says Azcentral. O’Connor told the source that “if you use the app it is next to impossible to lose a child. I have built in three safety nets.” He went on to tell the source that he “exhaustively tried to think of every single thing that would cause a parent or caretaker not to use the app” and found that “there are zero excuses.”
So far this year, seven children, majority who were under the age of two, have died from vehicular heatstroke nationwide. And while most parents, caretakers, or anyone else responsible for transporting a child believes they would never leave their kid in the car, O’Connor says that’s what the parents of the 751 kids thought too before they had to bury their child. So, if you have a child you are responsible for driving around, have a babysitter who drives with your child, or you are someone who is required to transport children, you may want to consider downloading this app as an added precaution despite the fact that you believe you would never leave a child in a vehicle.
Now, if you have lost a child to an accident that was brought on by someone else’s negligence or carelessness, contact Jackson, MS personal injury lawyer William E. Ballard. Whether you are wanting to obtain justice for the incident or wish to learn more about your legal rights, Ballard Law, PLLC is prepared to assist you with your matter.
You can reach Ballard Law, PLLC. at:
108 S. President Street
Jackson, MS 39201