Sending Office: Honorable Tim Ryan
H.R. 3593: Helping Overcome Trauma for Children Alone in Rear Seats (HOT CARS) Act of 2019
Cosponsors: Cooper, Garcia (Sylvia), Harder, Kelly (Robin),
King (Peter), Levin, Lowey, Meng, Ryan, Schakowsky
In 2018, at least 52 children were killed in hot cars, the highest number on record. On average, 38 children die each year from heat-related deaths after being left or becoming trapped in a vehicle. The temperature inside a car can reach 125 degrees in
a matter of minutes—even with the windows cracked—and a child’s body overheats 3-5 times faster than that of an adult. In combination, these factors create a deadly situation that could easily be avoided with a simple fix.
While several alert systems have already become standard in most vehicles—backup cameras, blind spot detection, and keyless ignition warnings—there is no requirement that vehicles alert drivers of a child left in the back seat. This is inexcusable. Our
legislation would require the Secretary of Transportation to issue a rule requiring all new passenger motor vehicles to be equipped with a child safety alert system. This alert system would detect the presence of a child who is unable to exit a vehicle or
has entered an unattended vehicle independently and engage a warning.
Some vehicle manufacturers already deploy child safety technology. While GM and Nissan have rear-seat reminder systems that monitor whether doors have been opened and closed, Hyundai has a two-step system that uses motion sensors to detect a rear-seat occupant.
These rear-seat monitoring systems differ by car make and model and are not yet standard in all new vehicles.
No child should be at risk of dying in a hot car. With this common-sense legislation, we can end these preventable tragedies and save young lives. If you have questions or would like to become a cosponsor, please contact Samantha Fay in Congressman Ryan’s
office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tim Ryan Peter King Jan Schakowsky
Member of Congress Member of Congress Member of Congress
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