Abu Dhabi Police remind drivers about the dangers of leaving children in hot cars

Parents who endanger their children’s lives by leaving them in a locked car could face a Dh1 million fine and a 10-year prison sentence

Abu Dhabi Police have reminded drivers about the dangers of leaving youngsters in hot cars.

Officials said leaving children alone inside vehicles while they run errands, or for any other reason, is a crime.

Action will be taken against such offenders, police said on social media.

"Leaving children in vehicles may cause their death or suffocation as a result of [them] tampering with the car key and switching off the engine,” authorities said.

“This would lead to a lack of oxygen and an increase in temperatures inside the vehicle.

“Children may unknowingly move the car, tamper with the transmission, or cause an accident. Ill-willed people can also take advantage of the situation or steal the car."

Temperatures average about 38°C in June, but can reach more than 48°C inside a vehicle within 10 minutes.

In November 2019, two brothers, aged 1 and 3, died after the vehicle they were left in caught fire outside a gift shop in Abu Dhabi's Zayed Port area.

It is a similar story in Dubai. Lt Col Abdullah Bishwa, head of Dubai Police's land rescue department, told The National in February that the reaction of some parents after being confronted by police was shocking.

“Some were very anxious, but others were very relaxed about it, saying that no harm had happened to the child,” he said.

“In some incidents, where we needed to smash the window, parents insisted we wait for them to get a spare key."

Fifty-three children were left alone in vehicles in Dubai last year, while there were 12 incidents reported to Dubai Police by February 17 this year.

Parents who endanger their children’s lives by leaving them in a locked car could face a Dh1 million ($272,255) fine and a 10-year prison sentence.

Temperatures hit 45°C in the first week of June

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