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Nebraska: Protect Companion Animals from Exposure and Hazards in Parked Cars

Nebraska: Protect Companion Animals from Exposure and Hazards in Parked Cars

Name: Immunity for Rescuing Animals in Unattended Vehicles

Bill Number: LB 440

Each year, hundreds of companion animals will tragically lose their lives when their owners leave them unattended in parked vehicles in extreme heat or cold, or in the presence of other dangers. Many pet owners are unaware that even on a mild 70-degree day, the inside of a parked vehicle can reach the temperature of an oven within minutes, causing severe dehydration and even resulting in an animal’s death. Sadly, rolling down the windows of a car has little to no effect on the interior temperature of a car. Conditions can be equally dangerous to companion animals on cold winter days.

LB 440 would hold a person immune from civil and criminal liability for property damage or injury that results from the forcible entry into a vehicle if the person reasonably believes that a companion animal is in imminent danger of suffering bodily harm or death unless they are removed from the vehicle. The person who is attempting a rescue must notify law enforcement or other first responders before entering the vehicle, must leave a written notice on the windshield, and then must remain with the animal in a safe location until emergency responders arrive.

Call to Actions:

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Please Protect Pets Left in Vehicles from Imminent Danger

Dear [Decision Maker],

I am writing to ask your support for legislation that will protect the health and safety of companion animals. Each year, individuals leave pets in unattended vehicles under dangerous conditions such as extreme heat, extreme cold or without proper ventilation.

LB 440 would allow a person to break into a car, without civil or criminal liability, while attempting to remove an animal from imminent danger. They would be required to notify law enforcement or other first responders prior to breaking into the vehicle and stay with the animal until first responders arrive to assist. A written notice must be left on the windshield to notify the owner of their action.

The best way to protect companion animals against imminent dangers is to enact a law that at least gives them a better chance at rescue. Owners may not be aware that the inside of a car can reach dangerous levels within minutes even on a temperate day, or that other hazards can face an unattended car and the animals in it.

Before the end of the current legislative session, please help Nebraska join many other states in protecting companion animals from the dangers of being left unattended in vehicles.

Thank you for your consideration.

[Your Name]
[Your Address]
[City, State ZIP]