Well this is new... and awesome. A police department in New York state recently took to Facebook to share the meaning behind new signage on one of their police cruisers, and it could save a life.

Police officers can have several types of partners, both human and animal. You've most likely seen mounted police on horses in New York City, and even bunny rabbits have been introduced to departments in other states. This vehicle decal, however, has to do with the most classic animal officer of all: dogs.

East Greenbush Police Department via Facebook
East Greenbush Police Department via Facebook

K-9 Heat Alarms in New York Police Vehicles

"Did you know our K-9 vehicle is equipped with a heat alarm?", the post began. "You may have seen this red decal on our unit and wondered what it meant... If the horn and siren are beeping while the unit is stationary, it means our heat alarm is going off", they continued. Not only does this "heat alarm" alert passersby that there may be an issue, there's actually several potentially life-saving measures that immediately go into effect.

Heat alarms can save a police K-9's life (East Greenbush Police Department via Facebook)
Heat alarms can save a police K-9's life (East Greenbush Police Department via Facebook)

Hot cars can be lethal for any living being, and unfortunately accidents claim the lives of people and animals every year, including the lives of police K-9s. Luckily, when the heat alarm works as intended, it can avert a similar disaster.

How Heat Alarms Work

When the heat alarm inside a police cruiser is activated, the vehicle windows immediately roll down, a fan is activated, and the horn begins to sound. Large window fans can even be seen on local Hudson Valley K-9 police vehicles. Anyone who witnesses a heat alarm activation is asked to call either 911 or the local police department directly.

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Are Heat Alarms Publicly Available?

Many commenters wondered why such technology wasn't made more widely available. "Where can I get one for my car, that's so neat of a system", offered one man. "That is great, now we need it for children who get left in hot cars", said another. Most recently in the Hudson Valley, a 1-year-old in Rockland county was found dead in a car after being left inside "for several hours".

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