Utah toddler dies after falling asleep in hot van

Posted at 2:50 PM, Jun 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-06-27 14:50:14-04

WINCHESTER HILLS, Utah — A 2-year-old died after being left in a hot van during a family reunion in Utah, KSTU-TV reports.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office said authorities were called to a home in Winchester Hills, located in the southwest corner of the state, just before 7 p.m. Saturday.

Officials said the child's father found the toddler unresponsive in the family van.

Deputies said several families from out of state were attending a family reunion near St. George. Authorities said more than five families, including between 25 and 35 children, were staying at a family's home during the trip.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office said the families had traveled to St. George for an activity with the children in multiple vehicles. Deputies said the families went back to the home in Winchester Hills so the adults could prepare for a religious meeting in St. George.

At that time, officials said, the 2-year-old child was a passenger in a coach-style van along with several other children. Officials said they suspect the child had fallen asleep during the return trip and no one noticed when the child didn't get out of the vehicle with the others.

When the adults came home after the meeting, they noticed the child was missing. Deputies said the child's father found the 2-year-old unresponsive in the van. Emergency crews arrived and pronounced the child dead.

Authorities said the investigation is ongoing.

The Washington County Attorney's Office will screen the case for possible criminal charges, however, it appears to be an accident at this time.