Sand Springs PD: Think Twice Before Breaking Animals Out Of Hot Cars
SAND SPRINGS, Oklahoma - It's extremely dangerous when children and animals are left in a hot car and while it may go against every bone in your body, police say you may want to wait a minute before breaking out the glass to rescue them. Police say the first thing you should do in any of these situations is to call 911.
The big difference is if you see a child or an animal. Sand Springs Police say people breaking a window to save an animal could get you into trouble.
"Current Oklahoma state law does not allow for protection of somebody damaging other people’s property in that instance," said Sand Springs Chief of Police Mike Carter.
Chief Carter says leaving animals in hot cars could amount to charges, and people cannot break into a vehicle to save them. If there are children in imminent danger and certain guidelines are followed citizens can break in.
"We want them to call 911, regardless where you're at, let police and fire come down and deal with that situation," said Chief Carter. "Our message is let’s not leave dogs, let’s not leave human beings, let’s not leave anybody in hot cars."
According to No Heat Stroke.org, an organization that tracks child vehicle heatstroke deaths, 749 children have died due to pediatric vehicle heatstroke since 1998.
Some of the guidelines for breaking into a vehicle if you believe a child is in danger include having a good faith belief that breaking into the vehicle is necessary because the child is in imminent danger of suffering harm and calling 911.