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Emergency lock service frees kids from cars

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Michelle Silva Pavao was fortunate to find help when she locked her infant son in the car. "It happened in a split second," she said. "I was buckling my baby into the car seat and forgot that I had placed my keys on the front seat. By habit, I locked the door and (when I) reached to open the driver-side (door), I realized what had happened."

Her son, Noah, was 11 months at the time. "All of the windows were up and he was just looking at me," she said.

Pavao recalled seeing a television commercial about Pop-A-Lock Honolulu and immediately called them. "They arrived within minutes and safely removed my baby from the car. They were extremely calm and professional."

Pavao is not the only one to need the service. According to Cathy Walker, co-owner of Pop-A-Lock Honolulu, eight children have been rescued since the company opened its doors in July 2009.

"In the locksmith business, I can’t think of anything more important than rescuing a child from a locked car, especially in Hawaii, where the hot temperatures can be life-threatening," Walker said.

The Pop-A-Lock emergency door unlocking program will immediately send a technician free of charge if a child is locked in a car. The program is aimed at supporting local police and firefighters in cases of accidental lock-ins, she explained. Public service announcements started airing that educate parents to first call 911 and then 1-800-POP-A-LOCK (1-800-767-2-5625).

"Pop-A-Lock has specialized car door unlocking tools specific to most vehicle makes and models, so our technicians are able to unlock the car within seconds," Walker said. "In one instance, the fire department arrived on the scene ahead of us, but required use of our Pop-A-Lock tools to unlock the vehicle. Pop-A-Lock is available 24/7 to handle any locksmith situation or emergency lockout, including all holidays."

For more information about Pop-A-Lock’s Emergency Door Unlock, visit www.popalock.com/emergency_door_unlocking.php.

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