Women’s & Children’s Hospital and Pop-A-Lock (PAL) on Wednesday, Sept. 9 announced a partnership in support of North America’s largest locksmith network’s PAL Saves Kids program, a joint public safety initiative focused on reducing, and hopefully someday, eliminating these tragic deaths in Acadiana.
“We have been the leader in providing quality healthcare services to meet the specific needs of women and children in Acadiana for more than 30 years. When Pop-A-Lock approached us to be the sole area hospital sponsor for PAL Saves Kids, it was a natural fit,” said John Marker, Chief Nursing Officer for Women’s & Children’s Hospital. “Even one death is too many. We are happy to do anything we can to reverse this trend and eliminate these tragic events in our community.”
Pop-A-Lock has vehicle locksmith franchises in 8,500 communities across North America. To date, the Lafayette-based company has rescued more than 350,000 children locked in unattended vehicles, according to Donald Marks, Pop-A-Lock Chief Executive Officer.
“It can happen to anyone. This tragedy typically occurs when a parent or caregiver makes a change in their routine,” Marks said. “PAL Saves Kids focuses on prevention and education.”
Here’s how it works. Anyone who notices a child in an unattended, locked vehicle is encouraged to call 911 first, then call (337) 347-9926. A Pop-A-Lock technician will respond and unlock the vehicle at no charge.
It’s that simple.
Acadiana first responders represented by the Lafayette Police Department, Lafayette Fire Department, Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office, Acadian Ambulance and Louisiana State Police Troop I attended the announcement on Wednesday, Sept. 9 at Women’s & Children’s Hospital to show their support for the program.
Nationally certified technicians from the Louisiana Passenger Safety Task Force conducted a free Car Seat Safety Check at the hospital immediately following the announcement. And, PAL, the Pop-A-Lock PAL Saves Kids mascot, paid a special visit to patients and families in the Pediatrics Department.