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Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security To Distribute Free Vehicle Hangtags To Help Prevent Heat-Related Child Deaths

Wednesday, September 02, 2020 | 12:12pm

NASHVILLE---The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security, in partnership with the Tennessee Secretary of State’s Office, is providing free vehicle hangtags to help prevent heat-related child deaths in vehicles while at the same time providing an easier way to register to vote.

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security received more than 75,000 hangtags to distribute across the state. Tennesseans will have the opportunity to receive a free hangtag at any Driver Services Center, through the Tennessee Highway Patrol or the Tennessee Highway Safety Office in the coming weeks.

“These hangtags will serve as a visible reminder that a child, the most precious cargo we can drive is sitting innocently in that vehicle,” said Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security Commissioner Jeff Long. “This will serve as an excellent way to prevent a tragic, preventable death from occurring. Children are our future. We owe it to them to be their voice and protect them at all costs.”

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), children dying from heatstroke in vehicles, either because they were left or trapped has increased in recent years. In Tennessee, it is illegal to leave a child unattended in a vehicle.

Secretary of State Tre Hargett worked with Representative Scott Cepicky and the Tennessee General Assembly to create hangtags to help save children’s lives across Tennessee.

“These hangtags will help prevent the tragic loss of a child to a senseless heat-related death,” said Secretary Hargett. “Our office is grateful to play a role in protecting these innocent lives.”

“I appreciate working with Secretary Hargett’s office to provide caregivers an easy visual reminder to check the backseat for a child before leaving the car,” said Representative Scott Cepicky. “We hope Tennesseans take advantage of these free hangtags to prevent the heartbreaking loss of a child.”

The Secretary of State’s Office created 500,000 hangtags with a QR code that, with one click, takes Tennesseans to the online voter registration system and reminds drivers to check the backseat for children before leaving a parked car.

The hangtags will also be distributed statewide through partnerships with the Tennessee Hospital Association to distribute to birthing and children’s hospitals and the Tennessee Department of Health’s county health departments.

The Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security’s mission is to serve, secure, and protect the people of Tennessee.