Can you permit a baby in a automobile alone below California regulation?

A car in the hot sun.

A automobile within the sizzling solar.

Getty Pictures/iStockphoto

Running errands can takes up a chunk of our days — especially when factoring in traffic, number of pit-stops and kids. To save time, it may be tempting to have your child wait in the car while you quickly run in the store.

However, there are rules in California when it comes to leaving your kid unattended in a vehicle.

After reading about California’s guidelines for leaving a child home alone, a Sacramento Bee reader asked the following question:

What age in CA can children be left in a car by themselves if their parent does an errand, such as grocery shopping?

Here’s what we found:

Can I leave a kid alone in a car in California?

Kaitlyn’s Law — or Senate Bill 255 — prohibits leaving children 6 years or younger alone in a vehicle under certain circumstances. The 2001 law followed the death of an infant, named Kaitlyn, who experienced fatal hyperthermia after her babysitter left her in a car for more than two hours.

A child under the age of six should not be left alone in a vehicle without the supervision of someone who is over the age of 12 when faced with the following circumstances, according to the California Vehicle Code 15620:

  • There are conditions that can pose a risk to the child’s health and safety if left alone in a vehicle.
  • The car is running and/or the keys are in the ignition.

Parents and guardians who leave a child 6 years old or younger unattended in a vehicle under the circumstances stated above, will be fined $100.

Risks of leaving your child in a vehicle

Hot weather conditions can cause a vehicle to easily reach temperatures of up to 150 degrees, according to the city of Riverside in the Inland Empire, predominantly a desert region.

Triple-digit temperatures can be deadly and cause heat strokes in adults and children. A child’s body temperature rises five times faster than an adult’s, according to the Riverside website.

Below are some heat stroke indicators to look out for, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • Body temperature reaches 103 degrees or higher
  • Skin feels hot, red, dry or damp
  • The person has a fast or strong pulse
  • The individual is experiencing a headache, dizziness, nausea or confusion
  • The person lost consciousness

The city of Riverside recommended parents and guardians follow ACT tips below:

  1. Avoid heatstroke: Never leave your child in a car alone and lock your car so that they don’t wander back in when you’re not around.
  2. Create reminders: After running an errand, leave a grocery bag or purse next to your child’s car seat so that you don’t forget your baby in the car.
  3. Take action: If you see a child alone in a car, call 911.

Associated tales from Sacramento Bee

Jacqueline Pinedo is a reporter on The Bee’s service journalism crew. She beforehand interned on the Los Angeles Instances and accomplished her grasp’s diploma on the College of Southern California.

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