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Hot Cars and Kids

New Mexico Teen’s Invention Aims to Stop Hot-Car Deaths

Teen's Invention Could Prevent Kid Deaths in Hot Cars 1:13

An Albuquerque teenager is doing her part to put an end to the spate of children being left in sweltering hot cars. Alissa Chavez, a high school senior, has a patent for a device she calls "The Hot Seat," a pad that is placed inside a car seat or booster seat that works with a driver's keychain or car alarm and an app on their phone. If a child is left inside the car and the temperature rises, alarms activate. "It's loud enough to grab people's attention around the vehicle, as well as remind the parent on their key fob or their cell phone," Chavez told NBC affiliate KOB.com after receiving recognition from the mayor of Albuquerque for her gadget. Chavez said she came up with the idea for her eighth grade science fair, and is now raising money for a prototype.

At least 18 children have died after being left in hot cars this year, with an average of 30 to 50 kids dying in hot cars each year, according to activist group KidsAndCars.org. Chavez's invention is not the only one of its kind: a North Carolina father recently debuted a new app called "Precious Cargo," which sends an alert to parents after the car engine stops.

New campaign warns parents about dangers leaving kids in hot cars 2:42

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