[–] GoofyGrape 1 points 45 points (+46|-1) ago 

Here are a few possible reasons:

  • I think it more likely that the kid(s) would have tagged along with mom and not be left in the car.

  • Doors and windows could be manually unlocked and children would not have been strapped down in a car seat. If they were old enough, kids could make their way out of a car if it was life threatening.

  • Families were bigger, so it is more likely that there would have been multiple siblings, thus there would be at least one kid who is old enough to figure out how to get out of a car if it got too hot.

  • Parents were more likely to leave the windows down and/or doors unlocked as people used to be more trusting.

  • Other adults passing by would have been less shy about opening a car door if they saw a child struggling in the heat.

  • Several decades ago, a family may only have one car, which would usually be for Dad driving to work. If Mom was going to go to the store with Junior, it would be later in the day after Dad got home from work, and therefore not as hot.

  • Not sure if this is the case, but I could imagine the characteristics that make the windows less likely to shatter also cause them to retain more heat.

  • As someone else posted, front and rear windows are more slanted than they used to be. Some of the really old cars also had very small rear windows.

  • If you go back enough decades, a higher proportion of cars did not have roofs.

  • Kids are fatter nowadays and are thus more prone to overheating.

  • Global warming. That one degree is apparently killing more kids in cars than it used to.

  • Kids are more likely to be, um, pigmented than in decades past. Meaning they absorb more sunlight.

[–] [deleted] 0 points 10 points (+10|-0) ago 



[–] GoofyGrape 0 points 14 points (+14|-0) ago 

I tried to structure the reasons going from most legit to least legit. The last few were intended to be more humorous than legit but still could be a factor I suppose.


[–] NuclearPoweredBadger 0 points 7 points (+7|-0) ago 

Or maybe it's just easier for dumb fucks to get a car and have kids?


[–] piratse 0 points 6 points (+6|-0) ago  (edited ago)

You forgot

  • The same shit happening today has been happening for generations. You are just getting older AND we have non stop information coming in. 40 years ago you couldn't see a video on snapchat of a kid in a car. The only way you hear about it is if it was a slow news day AND reporters were told about it.


[–] WhiteRonin 1 points 1 points (+2|-1) ago 

Thanks for the ideas but nope!

Society has become babies and pussfied ;-)

I miss riding in back of trucks and walking to school!


[–] CANCEL-CAT-FACTS 0 points 37 points (+37|-0) ago  (edited ago)

In the 70s my parents would leave me and my brother in the car during some errands, but back then we could roll the windows up and down.

Also, most hot car deaths seem to be infants who couldn't roll down a window, or open a door, anyway.


[–] DigitalRefugee 2 points 10 points (+12|-2) ago 

Wow, you're pretty old.


[–] CANCEL-CAT-FACTS 0 points 38 points (+38|-0) ago 

Get off my lawn.


[–] WhiteRonin 0 points 5 points (+5|-0) ago 

We ate baby crib paint and got to rid in back of trucks ...

Fucking baby society ... You kids have to learn that jumping off rooftops on your boards isn't that all dangerous ;-)


[–] MrPim 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

Summed up pretty nicely.


[–] Knutache 1 points 9 points (+10|-1) ago 

Not so much car design as the difference in people. Not so many criminals that would snatch the kids, so the car wasn't locked and the windows were left open. Plus, people didn't like their kids so much back then and were basically daring someone to take them.

I'm not sure how many years ago you mean, but I'm talking about cars that had an AM radio that nobody was going to steal. An ice scraper and jumper cables were the only "valuable" things in the car.


[–] 6013960? 1 points 8 points (+9|-1) ago 

I think heavily sloped/slanted front and back windows expose way more of a solar heating effect - not sure if this is the actual culprit, but it's probably a contributing factor.


[–] SpottyMatt 0 points 2 points (+2|-0) ago 

It absolutely is.

I have two cars, one (ironically older) with a pronounced slant in the windows, and a newer one with nearly vertical windows.

On hot days, the vertical-windowed car stays cooler much much longer.

The newer car also has smaller windows in the back, versus large windows in the back of the older car, and the back seats also have a very pronounced temperature difference after any amount of time in the hot sun.


[–] 6013935? 0 points 8 points (+8|-0) ago 

Graphic of heat death increases: http://www.kidsandcars.org/files/2016/06/TRB_Heat_Stroke_Calendar_English_2016.jpg

I'm not sure if it's a change in the way these deaths are reported, or actual increase in deaths.


[–] Seeker74 0 points 1 points (+1|-0) ago 

"Everybody gets a trophy" generation had kids about that time is the answer to the mystery, btw.


[–] SquarebobSpongebutt 1 points 5 points (+6|-1) ago 

Air bags. Seriously. Due to air bags, you can't put babies and toddlers in the front seat anymore. They also have a habit of going to sleep and/or not making much noise at all in the car. So people get out of their car and without a visible reminder that the kid is in the car they forget them. I always suggest to anyone with kids that they should always have something in the front passenger seat that reminds them to get the kid. For example, the diaper bag or a lunch box or something that relates to the kid that they have to get out.


[–] Seeker74 0 points 0 points (+0|-0) ago 

You are far more correct than most would suspect. Back in the days when you could do so, people put the kid in the front seat and you are not going to forget the baby or small child in the front seat next to you, even if the little ankle biter falls asleep, while its very easy for "out of sight/out of mind" to get you when the same kid is quiet (for once) in the back seat, and with a million things on your mind, and FB status's to update, and political opinions to get out there, and sports scores to track and work and bills and . . .

Then out you go to your destination and within an hour or two it's hot enough to kill that kid, and another tragedy gets reported on the news of nothing bigger happened that day.


[–] Sosacms 0 points 5 points (+5|-0) ago 

It didn't suddenly become dangerous, it just happened too frequently with life threatening results. Like most laws, it only exists because too many people were doing it and it was causing too much harm/death.


[–] Oveass 0 points 4 points (+4|-0) ago 

Electric windows

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