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Natalie Escobar

What This Mom Is Teaching Her Kids After a Hot Car Incident

She says there are steps parents can take to make sure a mistake doesn’t turn deadly.
PUBLISHED ON 08/11/2017

It’s hard not to shake your head after reading about yet another child left in a hot car. But it’s even harder to admit you’ve done it—and that’s what Amy Amos, an Ohio-based mom of three, did so that her own parenting lapse can be a teaching moment for others.

After returning home from spending the day at the pool, she parked her car, unbuckled her son from his car seat and opened his car door before going inside the house to use the restroom. (Amos is pregnant with twins and had to pee.) But as she later found out, her older daughter accidentally closed the car door, leaving her 3 year old trapped inside. When he tried to open the door from the inside, he panicked.

“The doors were shut, he was sweating and sobbing with his face pressed against the window,” Amos shared in a blog post on July 31. “Ten minutes while we were distracted, and he was trapped in the car.”

“Why is this not something we talk about?” she wondered. “Why isn’t it a thing we teach our kids, like we do with fire drills?”

The frightening incident reminded Amos that there are a lot of simple things children haven’t learned that parents take for granted. By speaking out, she hopes other parents will help teach their kids some of these basic emergency skills:

  • Unlatching a car seat safety belt
  • Opening door handles
  • Showing how car locks work
  • Honking the horn until someone comes to help
  • Pushing buttons that can open the car trunk

At the very least, she says, learning how to honk the horn and push buttons can help prevent disaster. And these are the very survival skills she teaching her children, and hopes other parents will too.