Record number of children die in hot cars in 2010

(AP) -- This year of record temperatures has meant a record number of children dying in hot vehicles.

According to the Kansas-based group Kids and Cars, 48 children have died of hyperthermia after being left or becoming trapped in a hot car or truck. Group founder and president Janette Fennell says the previous record of 47 was set in 2005.

Since 1998, an average of 37 children have died in the United States in hot vehicles. Fennell's statistics show Texas leads the nation with 13 deaths, followed by Florida with 5.

Fennell has recorded hot-car deaths as late as December and in every month but January. This year, children have died in hot cars in as far north as Maine, Wisconsin and South Dakota.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.