Crit­i­cally ill boy hid from mum in hot car

The Australian - - THE NATION - SIMONE FOX KOOB TESSA AK­ER­MAN

An eight-year-old boy found in a crit­i­cal con­di­tion in a hot car in Mel­bourne’s west hid in the rear of the fam­ily ve­hi­cle dur­ing the school drop-off with­out his mother know­ing and spent a “long pe­riod of time” in the back be­fore he was found.

Po­lice said the woman dropped her chil­dren off at school in the morn­ing and then headed to work, park­ing the car in New­port, west of Mel­bourne.

She did not know her son was hid­ing in the back.

“The mother dropped her chil­dren at pri­mary school in the morn­ing but didn’t re­alise one of the kids climbed into the rear of the car and hid,’’ po­lice said.

“She drove to work and parked her car with­out know­ing he was in there.’’

The boy re­mained in the car for a “long pe­riod of time” dur­ing the day be­fore he was found. Tem­per­a­tures on Mon­day were above 30C. The boy re­mains in a crit­i­cal con­di­tion at the Royal Chil­dren’s Hos­pi­tal.

His mother is on the staff at the New­port Gar­dens Pri­mary School. Prin­ci­pal Si­mon McGlade con­firmed the child was the son of a staff mem­ber.

The Aus­tralian un­der­stands while car doors and boots are re­quired to be able to be un­locked from the in­side, a rear door on the Kia Grand Car­ni­val has no such re­quire­ment as there is ac­cess to the stan­dard doors.

Kid­safe Vic­to­ria gen­eral man­ager Ja­son Cham­bers said chil­dren were more sus­cep­ti­ble to de­hy­dra­tion and heat ex­haus­tion than adults as their body tem­per­a­tures could climb three to five times faster than adults’.

He said it was im­por­tant for par­ents to be alert as tem­per­a­tures in­side cars quickly rise.

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