New law allows first responders to rescue pets in danger from motor vehicles

Local News

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – New York State has a new law aimed to help save pets wrongfully left in hot or freezing cars.

On hot days like today, firefighters say it’s especially critical not to leave pets unattended in a car.

“Even what might be for us a moderately hot day, gets extremely hot because of the greenhouse effect in the car with the sun shining down,” John D’Alessandro, FASNY Secretary, said.

In New York State it’s illegal to keep an animal confined in a car during extreme hot or cold temperatures without enough ventilation or protection.

A new law gives emergency medical responders and firefighters the authority to take pets in danger out of the motor vehicles.

“The primary obligation of every firefighter is to protect lives and save property and when appropriate that includes the lives of animals.”

A statement from Governor Cuomo’s press office says:

This legislation will help reduce wait times when calls are made to 911 that a pet is in danger, especially in areas and at times when law enforcement or animal control availability is limited.

It’s pretty clear now that we have the ability to go and do what we need to do to rescue that animal. Of course, as we’re doing that we try to do minimal damage to the vehicle,” D’Alessandro said.

The law immediately went into effect.

The fine for leaving an animal in a vehicle in extreme weather conditions in a car is $50 to $100 for the first offense, and $100 to $250 for subsequent offenses.

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