Nissan hoping to lower hot car deaths with alert system

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. -- On average, 37 children die nationally from being left in a hot car each year; so far in 2018, 29 have been killed and at least 39 animals have died as a result of being trapped in a vehicle.

To try and reduce those numbers, Nissan announced their "rear door alert" will be a standard in all of their new 4-door vehicles by 2022.

"I think with the feature it'll just be a great alert for everyone," said Eddie Williams, general sales manager at Landers McLarty Nissan of Huntsville.

The car will alert the driver when they walk away from the car if the back door was opened during the current trip and was not re-opened when the car was turned off. Drivers are also given a dashboard alert to help remind them that they might be forgetting something.

"Not only kids but pets or any kind of beverages or food," Williams said.

Marlene Mendoza, a mother of three, was one of the Nissan engineers who designed the alarm; she said, "If it helps one person, it'll make a difference. It's just so good to know that this is a feature that will be there for you if you ever need it."

The alert system is already in the 2018 Nissan Pathfinder, but the company plans to start putting it in other models as early as next year.