It’s been a hotter-than-average July in Baker City, and for many people a busy one.

This is a potentially tragic combination.

No parent or pet owner is immune from forgetting, however temporarily, that they parked their car and then left without bringing a child or dog along.

Sometimes people even do so intentionally, intending to return in just a few minutes.

But when the temperature outside soars above 80, as it has every day this month, it can take scarcely more than those few minutes for the temperature inside a vehicle to reach a fatal level for the occupant.

Advocacy groups suggest several tactics that can help people avoid an inadvertent mistake, such as putting a wallet or purse in the backseat, the idea being that you won’t leave the car without it. Parents of young children are urged to put the diaper bag in the front seat as a reminder that baby is in the back.

Ultimately, anything that can help a harried parent or pet owner while they go about their errands is worthwhile.

Many of us will be traveling from one event to another this weekend during Miners Jubilee. And temperatures are forecast to top 90 every day.

We hope everyone is vigilant, including people who are walking through crowded parking lots.

Less than a month ago, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown signed a law that protects people from civil or criminal liability if they break into a vehicle to rescue a child or pet that is in danger.

We’re not suggesting people stroll parking lots looking for an opportunity to smash a window, to be sure.

But we think the new law is a good one.

If nothing else it emphasizes how dangerous a seemingly innocuous mistake can be under the wrong circumstances.

From the Baker City Herald editorial board. The board consists of publisher Kari Borgen, editor Jayson Jacoby and reporter Chris Collins.

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