NASHVILLE, Tennessee — A new law was passed in Tennessee, effective July 1, that allows a bystander to break into a car to save a dog or other pet from life-threatening heat.
The recently passed legislation extends the “Good Samaritan” laws that allows bystanders to break into a car if a child is in danger from heat or other causes. Now you can do the same thing for dogs who have been locked in a hot car.
This is not to say that anyone can break into a car at any time. According to this new law, the person must take reasonable steps first (like trying to find the owner or calling the police). Breaking into the car is the last resort.
“If you act reasonably, as any reasonable person would respond, you will not be at fault to save a life,” Nashville Fire Department Chief of Staff Mike Frankin told ABC News. “You will not be at any fault to save a life and/or animals.”
This law comes after New York assemblyman John Ceretto proposed a new bill May 26 to allow ordinary citizens to break into a car to save its life. The bill has been referred to the Agriculture Committee.
This law is a step in the right direction to make this trend stop once and for all. Roughly 1,000 dogs die in hot cars every year because animals can sustain brain damage or even die from heatstroke in just 15 minutes.
Join the conversation on Twitter and tell us how you’re saying #notohotdogs.