‘Baby Locked in a Car With a Note’ Goes Viral Again, Highlighting Hot-Car Dangers

May 8, 2019 Updated: June 20, 2019

A baby locked in a car in New Zealand with a note outraged many when it was posted online several years ago. Now, it’s going viral again amid a spate of hot-car deaths around the United States.

The newborn baby was sleeping in a car with a note that said, “My mum’s in doing the shopping, call her if I need anything.” Her cell phone number was included on the note.

They were planning to call the police, but wanted to wait for the mother to return. A witness said, “We waited there for a little bit, wondering if the mum was just going to be two seconds and come back, and my wife said, ‘I’m not going in without someone being here with the baby.'”

A witness took a now-viral picture of the baby in the car with the note. The picture was taken in 2013, but it’s gone viral again—years later—amid numerous deaths of children and pets in hot cars after parents and owners forgot, or thought that leaving their child in a hot vehicle wouldn’t be that harmful.

The picture highlights the perils of leaving a child unattended in a car—especially a hot car. Since 1998, at least 700 children have died from heat stroke by being left in a car. Numerous pets have also died the same way.

Some advice from Safercar.gov regarding the issue:

-Always check the back seats of your vehicle before your lock it and walk away.

-Keep a stuffed animal or other memento in your child’s car seat when it’s empty, and move it to the front seat as a visual reminder when your child is in the back seat.

-If someone else is driving your child, or your daily routine has been altered, always check to make sure your child has arrived safely.

-Experts have noted that a car’s temperature can rise 20 degrees Fahrenheit in under 10 minutes.

Recently, there have been two high-profile hot car deaths in the United States.

According to reports on May 7, a toddler died after being left in a car in New Jersey.

Lakewood Township police said they are investigating the death of the nearly 2-year-old girl, NBC New York reported, which added that the girl died at around 2 p.m. local time.

Mayor Meir Lichtenstein said warm temperatures contributed to this girl’s death. “It seems like wonderful parents. They have one other child that is approximately 4 1/2 years old that is also a girl, and they are very saddened,” Lakewood Mayor Meir Lichtenstein told CBS New York. “I was actually at the hospital and I saw the parents. They’re extremely saddened by what happened.”

And, in Minnesota, a father was arrested after leaving a 4-year-old in a hot car while he worked.

Kristopher Alexander Taylor, 28, said he allowed his son to stay inside his vehicle with the window cracked because he didn’t have anyone else to watch his son as he worked.

Taylor was working at the Minnesota Monthly 8th Annual Grillfest at CHS Field in downtown St. Paul, according to KAKE-TV, citing charging documents.

The boy, who wasn’t named, was left in Taylor’s care by his mother, the report said.