CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- A fifth child has died from heatstroke this year, after being left alone inside a hot car, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
In just three weeks, Kingston Jackson would have celebrated his second birthday. His life was cut short Friday when he was left inside a hot car in Burleson, Texas for five hours following what police believe was a misunderstanding between his parents.
Kingston was unresponsive when paramedics arrived and died from a heatstroke.
"I think a lot of people aren't aware that even if it's 60, 70, 80 degrees outside it doesn't mean that the interior of a vehicle can't get well into 100 degrees,” said Seargant Jay Berg.
Just last summer there were at least two similar incidents in North Carolina. In one case, an 11-month-old baby was left inside a car for eight hours.
Every 10-20 minutes the inside of the car rises 20 degrees, according to Kars4Kids. A car can reach 109 degrees in just 15 minutes during summer months.
A total of 618 kids have died after being left in a hot car since 1998.
"The car acts like a greenhouse and it absorbs all of that radiant heat from the sun but doesn't escape and the child's body temperature can elevate very rapidly and cause heat stroke and death," Dr. Lisa Diard with Cleveland Clinic explained.
But as the weather warms up in the Carolinas, there are apps and devices to keep your family safe.
The Precious Cargo app is designed by a North Carolina dad and reminds the driver that there is precious cargo once the engine stops.
The Kars4Kids Safety app uses an alarm to alert the driver of a child whenever the driver or the cell phone exit the vehicle.
And the device “Sense A Life” will send an app alert and a message over the car's speaker reminding the driver of a child as they exit.
Experts also say a car seat should always be placed behind the passenger’s seat or in the middle seat, never behind the driver.
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