Self-lock cars trap ba­bies

Rodney Times - - OUT & ABOUT - ZIZI SPARKS

A rise in the num­ber of tod­dlers and ba­bies be­ing locked in cars has seen one fire sta­tion look­ing into get­ting bet­ter equip­ment to deal with the is­sue.

Fire­fight­ers at East Coast Bays Fire Sta­tion on Auck­land’s North Shore have at­tended three in­ci­dents in the last fort­night of chil­dren or ba­bies be­ing locked in cars.

Sta­tion of­fi­cer Nick Pen­fold said the spike could be due to the rise in pop­u­lar­ity of cars with self­lock­ing mech­a­nisms.

Some newer cars have a fea­ture in which car doors au­to­mat­i­cally lock once an en­gine is turned off and a driver’s door is opened and closed.

Pen­fold said it was im­por­tant to never leave young chil­dren or ba­bies in the car alone, even if just for a short time.

He said, while self-lock­ing mech­a­nisms could cause a child to be locked in a car, he has seen, on other oc­ca­sions, chil­dren had been play­ing with keys and ac­ci­den­tally pressed the lock but­ton.

In these in­stances, the chil­dren are too young to know how to un­lock the ve­hi­cle, so the fire service is called.

Pen­fold said the three in­ci­dents in two weeks were just in the East Coast Bays sta­tion’s cov­er­age area.

The East Coast Bays Fire Sta­tion was now look­ing into get­ting bet­ter equip­ment to deal with sim­i­lar in­ci­dents.

DAVID WALKER/STUFF

Fire­fight­ers from East Coast Bays Fire Sta­tion are look­ing into bet­ter equip­ment to res­cue chil­dren trapped in self-lock­ing cars.

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