New Indiana law protects people who rescue dogs from hot cars

VINCENNES, Ind. (AP) — A new Indiana law is aimed at protecting people who rescue a pet trapped in a hot car.

The Vincennes Sun-Commercial reports that the law says a person who forcibly enters a vehicle to remove an animal will be responsible for only half the cost of damages to the vehicle. The law goes into effect July 1.

The person rescuing a pet will also be immune from civil or criminal liability from other property damage caused getting into the vehicle if there is a reasonable belief that the animal is in imminent danger or suffering serious bodily harm.

Law enforcement also must be contacted before breaking into the car. Good Samaritans must stay with the animal until law enforcement or emergency responders arrive.