Warmer weather prompts reminder: don’t leave kids or pets in the car

RAPID CITY, S.D. — Warmer temperatures for the start of summer bring more people outside to be active.

But those temps also come with some safety precautions that must be taken. Whether you’re out on the trail enjoying the scenery in the Black Hills or just around town.

As you run your errands with your children and pets inside the vehicle, it’s never a good idea to leave them in the car at any point, even if you crack the window.

Pennington County Sheriff’s officials saying that kids or pets aren’t safe in the car – no matter what – when it comes to extreme heat.

“Just a crack in the window is not sufficient air ventilation. Temperature increases dramatically in a short amount of time and it just is unsafe for our kids and for our pets to be left in the car for any amount of time really,” Lt. Chris Hislip with the Pennington County Sheriff’s Office.

If you’re thinking about leaving the car running with the air conditioning on, think again.

Instead, plan ahead.

“That is not an alternative either. It’s just really having a plan, if you’re going to have your furry friend with you or your children is still what you’re going to do with them whenever you’re in the store or whenever you’re running your errands,” Hislip said. “To be safe, plan ahead and look before you lock.”

Custer State Park officials say that aside from letting loved ones know where you are, bringing extra water and knowing your location is essential when hiking in the Hills.

“Always bringing spare water with you is essential, and then another thing is to know where you’re going…know the distance of the hiking trail that you’re on,” said Kobee Stalder, Visitor Services Program Manager at Custer State Park.

If you’re planning to head out sometime during the week, it’s time to start hydrating now, so you’re body can get its replenishment and electrolytes it needs.

“Kind of a goal should be to have clear urine; it kinda tells you that you have enough hydration but if you’re getting to the point where you feel like you’re thirsty, you’re probably behind and you should probably start drinking right away,” Brooke Eide, Emergency Medicine Physician at Monument Health.

A look ahead at heat safety as the threat approaches the Black Hills.

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