According to the National Safety Council, 51 children died in hot cars in 2018. That’s the deadliest year on record in the past two decades. Cases of children being left in hot vehicles have even spawned a new catchphrase - "Forgotten Baby Syndrome."
Tech companies have produced various phone apps to help parents focus on the safety of their children.
We talked to one man who designed a new app because of what happened to a close family friend.
"We actually had a brush with one of these tragedies here in Charleston," said Nelson Richards in a Facetime interview Thursday. After a family friend lost their child after accidentally leaving them in a hot car, Richards said he wanted to keep this from happening again.
A partner in the tech company Leftshoe, Richards says his company released a new phone app last month. Called Droppop, Richards says the app alerts parents and any other caregiver if a child doesn't arrive at a scheduled place or appointment.
He says the alarm makes you sit up and take notice. "It sounds kind of like a klaxon and it will get your attention,” said Richards. “It’s not meant to be so loud that you're going to run off the road or anything, we worked through a lot of sound effects and we hit upon something to get your attention.”
Richards says Droppop is about safety not marketing and, for the majority of caregivers, the app is free. He says it’s hoped the app will help stressed out parents from making a tragic mistake.
For more information, you can learn more by visiting the website https://droppop.app.