RIDGEFIELD, Conn. (AP) — The father of a 15-month-old Connecticut boy who died after being left in a car on a hot day was supposed to drop him off at day care but went to work and left his son inside the parked vehicle, police said Wednesday.
The boy, who was identified by police as Benjamin Seitz, was driven to the hospital by his father on Monday after he was found inside the vehicle, according to Ridgefield police. Temperatures in western Connecticut reached into the upper 80s on Monday.
Ridgefield Capt. Jeff Kreitz said Tuesday the boy had been left inside the car Monday for an “extended period of time.” Police said they were still trying to determine exactly how long.
Authorities say the cause of death has yet to be determined. Police have declined to say whether they are considering criminal charges against the boy’s father, who lives in Ridgefield.
More than three dozen children die of hyperthermia in cars annually in the United States, and since 1998 more than 500 children have died in hot cars. Heatstroke can happen when the temperature is as low as 57 degrees, and car interiors can reach well over 110 degrees even when the outside temperature is in the 60s.