Lowcountry woman aims to bring more awareness to infant hot car deaths
West Ashley, S.C. (WCIV) —
North Charleston Police are investigating the hot car death of a baby that occurred Tuesday afternoon. One Lowcountry mother is continuing her work with non-profit Kids and Cars, in hopes of preventing hot car deaths.
In 2004—Bien lost her one-year-old daughter Aslyn.
“My sitter was running errands with my daughter, she was not used to the routine of the day," Bien said.
Her daughter was left in a hot car for about an hour.
"Before this happened to me, I didn’t think I needed this education,” she said.
Deona Bien said education and routines are what she recommends for all parents and caretakers of children. According to Kids and Cars, South Carolina ranks 20th in the nation in hot cars deaths of children.
Bien suggested everyone who cares for a child should consider creating a checklist.
Today, she works with Kids and Cars to prevent other families from experiencing her pain.
“Most importantly, set up alerts and reminders for daycare centers so that in the event that someone doesn’t drop their child off by a certain time, they receive a phone call from their day care provider," she advises.
The group also has a rescue device for sale, so if you see a child in a hot car, you can get them out.
“It has got a little spring device in it, so if you put it on the corner of a window and push in on it, the spring will pop it and it will shatter.”
Kids and Cars has taken their work to the nation’s capital.
“Our hope is to have technology added to automobiles that will alert the drivers that they still have a child in the car," Bien said.
She’s pushing for lawmakers to enact a "Hot Cars Act."
“There were elements of the hot cars act that was enacted in the self-driving cars." she said.
In Bien’s case—no charges were filed—but she sends a reminder to all parents: “Realize that this can happen to anybody,” she said.
To learn more about Kids and Cars, click here.