The Science
Loving parents, sleeping children:
How this tragedy happens
Forgetting is a failure of memory, not of love.
"Memory is a machine, and it is not always flawless. Our conscious mind prioritizes things by importance... our memory does not. If you’re capable of forgetting your cellphone, you are potentially capable of forgetting your child."
— Dr. David Diamond, professor of molecular physiology at the University of South Florida
The mind has two competing "drivers":
The Basal Ganglia are responsible for directing voluntary motor control and eye movement, both which are essential for driving from A to B.
The Hippocampus is the region of the brain that controls emotions, memories, and the nervous system.
Sometimes, when the Hippocampus is planning the day ahead, the autonomous Basal Ganglia is operating the car without consideration for changes in your morning routine (which may ultimately go unnoticed).
How do we stop a tragedy?
The first step is to accept that human memory is faulty and that loving and attentive parents can unintentionally leave their children in cars.