Local Politics

Bill would prohibit leaving children unattended in cars

Posted April 28, 2009

— Child safety is behind a bill in the state House of Representatives that would make it a crime to leave children unattended in a vehicle.

House Bill 827 would prohibit adults from leaving children under age 9 in a vehicle that is parked in a location where safety is an issue or one left running or with the keys easily accessible.

Rep. Alice Graham Underhill, D-Craven Bill would prohibit leaving children unattended in cars

Anyone in violation of the law would be issued a warning for a first offense and be found guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor on subsequent offenses.

The bill does allow parents to leave children in a vehicle if they are supervised by someone 14 years old or older. Another exception would be if the child and vehicle are in the immediate proximity or line of sight of the adult.

"We just didn't have anything that addressed this," Rep. Alice Graham Underhill, D-Craven, the bill's sponsor, said. "Young children can't get out of the car themselves sometimes, so it's very important that they not be left unattended."

The bill is getting the thumbs up from parents who say it's simply the right thing to do.

"I think it's a great idea, and it's hard to believe it's not already a law," said Alyson Skinner, a mother of two.


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  • ladyblue Apr 29, 2009

    it's a shame we need a bill to teach adult drivers this isn't it????????

  • Iworkforaliving Apr 29, 2009

    Won't be long before there's a bill to ban removing children from the umbilical cord.

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Apr 29, 2009

    Even though people say it, clearly there is NO common sense. Our values, priorities and global outlooks are different.

    For me, it common sense to not kill someone if you can work out a peaceful agreement...or eat plants instead of murdering 80 animals every year. Ya still with me? :-)

    And the "less gov't" people...is THIS what gets you screaming about less gov't? LOL ...but telling people who they can't marry, what they can do with their own body, how they can end their life, what religion should get public $$, spying on them without a warrant...that's all ok?

  • batcave Apr 29, 2009

    I need to move to South Carolina where they still value freedom and liberty.

    i am right behind you, change I can believe in, movin to SC

  • ezLikeSundayMorning Apr 29, 2009

    If you see a child in a car, look closer. If that child is in a hot car and truely in danger, break the window and get the child out.

    Some people assume that just being alone in a car is unsafe. Yes, cars get dangerously hot really fast... on warm days with the windows up. Too many busy bodies want to start trouble because something might be dangerous.

  • SME2 Apr 29, 2009

    Laws like this need to be enforced by the citizens. If you see a child/baby in a car unattended call the cops. I did and the lady was pretty mad. Oh well..cops just gave her a warning. At least I can sleep at night knowing I tried to protect a child from an uncaring parent.

  • Nancy Apr 29, 2009

    How about a law to financially punish the stupid parents?

    How about putting blame on stupidity in the fashion of a hefty fine?

    You cannot EVER legislate away stupidity.

    Where is the dayum lifeguard that's supposed to be watching the gene pool!

  • panthers254 Apr 29, 2009

    another law that's not going to be enforced. just another example of the government trying to take over every facet of our lives. well, we have laws against heroin and cocaine, yet heroin and cocaine are available at almost every street corner in durham, we have laws against illegally possessing handguns, yet, people are killed by illegal weapons every day.
    lets enforce the laws we have on the books now before we make more that will go ignored. i guess i better look on the bright side, as long as there are criminals, i have a job.

  • dplowman Apr 29, 2009

    Well you know most of these parents are goverment educated so what do you expect? (common sence) It went out twenty years ago when we were told to put on our seat belts when driving.GO BIG GOVERMENT!!!

  • nufsaid Apr 29, 2009

    "We know our children and know what they can and cannot handle. We don't need politicians in Raleigh deciding, especially for other areas of the state.

    Nope, the central planners always know best.