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Legislation aims to reduce the number of children left in the car

Tom Magliery

A bill introduced in Lansing would reduce the risks associated with leaving children alone in a car.

The measure would require auto manufacturers to build an alarm system, to alert parents when they’ve left a child in the car.

Democratic State Representative Robert Kosowski is the bills sponsor. He said sometimes parents are busy thinking about other things and need to be reminded of their children.

“One of the things parents are so busy nowadays that sometimes they forget, they run into a gas station, may leave their child in the backseat. I’m sure you’ve heard of cars being hijacked or the heat factor. It’s a small thing to make sure kids are safe.”

Representative Kosowski said he has spoken to car companies about the idea.

“I have talked to them, I’m trying not to put a big burden on them. I really respect the big three and other companies, what they do for all the residents, but I thought with car seat makers and auto industry we could come up with a simple alarm that wouldn’t cost a lot of money.”

Representative Kosowski said he sees adding an alarm as a simple fix that could save lives.

“Parents might leave their child in a hot car and it could only take minutes if it’s hot out. Like I said, it’s a very simple deal to make sure the kids are safe. It’s just a little alarm.”

According to , 738 children have died in cars due to heatstroke since 1998.

Representative Kosowski says the bill has been introduced but has not yet moved to committee.