The hot summer months are upon us, and so are the dangers of leaving people and pets inside your vehicle for “just a minute.” During warm weather, vehicle interior temperatures take only a few minutes to rise to dangerous levels, resulting in a serious health risk or even death.
Beyond a preventable personal tragedy, Illinois law (720 ILCS 5/12C-5) provides that an individual may be charged with child endangerment if they knowingly cause or permit the life or health of a child (under 18) to be endangered; or to be placed in circumstances that endanger life or health. Illinois law also provides for pets confined in a motor vehicle (510 ILCS 70/7.1), which threatens their life or health by exposure to prolonged extreme heat or cold without proper ventilation or protection from it.
In an effort to decrease these types of incidents, Warrenville officers will respond to calls and take action to resolve children or pets being left unattended in a vehicle (625 ILCS 5/11-1401), whether running or not. Remedying this situation may include an officer forcibly entering a vehicle to remove the child or pet from the condition; and, all instances, the person responsible is subject to criminal prosecution.
For their health and safety, the public is urged not to leave children or pets alone in a vehicle. Report it, if you see it. Call 9-1-1 and an officer will respond.