A. There shall be no liability on the part of a person for property damage or trespass to a motor vehicle, if the damage was caused while the person was rescuing an animal in distress as provided in this Section. The immunity from liability for property damage to a motor vehicle as provided herein does not affect a person's liability for bodily injury suffered by the animal while the person was rescuing the animal.
B. The immunity provided by Subsection A of this Section shall apply only if the person:
(1) Makes a good-faith attempt, based on the circumstances known to the person at the time, to locate the owner of the motor vehicle before entering, forcibly or otherwise, the vehicle.
(2) Contacts the local law enforcement agency, the fire department, animal control, or the 911 emergency operator before entering the motor vehicle forcibly or otherwise.
(3) Determines the motor vehicle is locked and has a good-faith belief that there are no other reasonable means for the animal to be removed from the vehicle.
(4) Believes that removal of the animal from the motor vehicle is necessary because the animal is in imminent danger of death.
(5) Uses force that was reasonably necessary under the circumstances to enter the motor vehicle to rescue the animal.
(6) Places a notice on the windshield of the motor vehicle providing details of the person's contact information, the reason the entry was made, the location of the animal, and notice that the proper authorities have been notified.
(7) Remains with the animal in a safe location, out of the elements of nature but reasonably close to the motor vehicle, until emergency responders from law enforcement, fire, or animal control arrive, unless the person cannot remain with the animal, in which case the person shall notify the local law enforcement agency, the fire department, animal control, or the 911 emergency operator, as applicable, before leaving the motor vehicle, and shall then take the animal to the closest shelter, as applicable.
C. As used in this Section:
(1) “Animal” means any cat or dog kept for pleasure, companionship, or other purposes that are not purely commercial.
(2) “In distress” means any condition that endangers the health or well-being of an animal due to heat, cold, or lack of adequate ventilation or any other circumstances that could reasonably be expected to cause suffering, disability, or death.
(3) “Unattended” means an animal who has been left in a motor vehicle when the driver or operator of the vehicle is more than thirty feet from the vehicle or cannot be contacted by verbally calling out for the owner of the vehicle.
Added by Acts 2018, No. 360, § 1.