If anyone ever deserved a cold glass of lemonade, it was Robin Regan.
Regan, a Georgia sheriff’s deputy, has become an Internet hero after locking himself inside a car with the windows up and no air conditioning on a sweltering summer day in order to teach the world a lesson about safety.
Last week, Regan starred in a six-minute video produced by the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office that documented the demonstration. The video has since been viewed over 3.4 million times online.
Yesterday, I "volunteered" to sit in a HOT patrol car to demonstrate why NOT to leave children, pets, or anyone unattended in a hot parked car. Many of you may have seen the video from WSB-TV (link below), here is a more in depth behind the scenes video from that demonstration. http://bcove.me/7vsk6224
Posted by Forsyth County Sheriff's Office on Thursday, June 18, 2015
The vehicle’s interior temperature was measured at 96.7 degrees when Regan closed the driver’s side door to begin the demonstration.
“I’m trying to simulate being left in a car for maybe somebody running into the store, getting gas real quick — the typical reasons somebody would leave either a child or a pet in a vehicle,” Regan said. “A lot of times, people think, ‘Oh, it’s not that hot’ or ‘I’m just gonna be a few minutes.’ But the temperature rises so fast.”
After seven minutes in the car, Regan’s heart rate jumped to 115 beats per minute. According to the Mayo Clinic, an adult’s typical resting heart rate should be between 60 - 100. By that time, the temperature in the vehicle had topped 101 degrees.
Regan appeared visually uncomfortable in the clip — sweating heavily — and described himself as feeling ill.
Department officials added this disclaimer to the video on Facebook, “We want to add that this patrol car has tinted windows. It could have heated up much faster and gotten much hotter without them!”
At one point, all the cameras inside the vehicle stopped working due to “high internal temperatures,” according to the video. When the electronics started working again, Regan measured the in-car temperature at between 105 - 110 degrees.
After about 20 minutes, the demonstration was stopped. Before exiting the car, Regan measured the temperature on the dashboard at over 177 degrees and near the driver’s side door it was 124.1 degrees.
When he exited the car, Regan’s heart rate was measured at 151 beats per minute, despite simply sitting inside the vehicle. The deputy later posted on Facebook, “I spent the rest of the day re-hydrating, had a headache, and felt a little sluggish.”
In 2014, 21 children died from heatstroke suffered inside hot cars, according to HLN. A total of 717 kids in America died in a similar way between 1990 - 2013, according to the advocacy group KidsAndCars.org.
Clint Davis is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @MrClintDavis.