A 2-YEAR-OLD boy has died after he was found dead inside a hot car in Kansas.
Lawrence Police Department said they received a call that the toddler had been left unattended in a parked car at around 5.37pm on Sunday.
The boy, identified as DéVonté Lashawn Turner, was found dead inside the parked vehicle at the 3300 block of Iowa St.
It was not immediately clear how long the child had been left in the car.
Temperatures reached 31C on Sunday evening, the National Weather Service reported.
Lawrence Police Chief Gregory Burns Jr told reporters on Monday that “it appears as though heat may have been a contributing factor”.
Police have said they are unclear about the specific circumstances surrounding the incident but have contacted the boy’s family and investigations are ongoing.
Chief Burns said the boy was “not with his parents” at the time.
He added: “Rather, he was under the care of family members.”
“Anytime we lose a citizen of our city it’s very tragic. This tragedy is compounded when its a child.”
“This serves as a reminder to please take extra care when exiting your vehicles, especially at this time of year when temperatures are high.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics notes that temperatures inside a car can dramatically increase in minutes.
At least 31 children have died this year of pediatric heatstroke, according to NoHeatStroke.org.
No arrests have been made.
The phenomenon of vehicular heatstroke – where a person’s body rapidly overheats while they’re inside a vehicle – has killed 819 children in the US in the past 20 years.
Just last month, Juan Rodriguez endured every parent’s worst nightmare when his baby twins died after he “accidentally” left them in his hot car all day.
He was vilified by parents around the world, but the dead tots’ mother stood steadfastly by him, calling him ‘a great father’ – and this week a judge said ‘he had no case to answer’.
And last week, a toddler died after being discovered in a hot car in the driveway of her San Diego California home while her mum took a midday nap.
The mum phoned the police at 12.42pm on Monday to say she had woken up from a nap and could not find her daughter.