A toddler has been treated in hospital for dehydration after allegedly being left in a vehicle for up to six hours in 28C heat.
The two-year-old was found inside a bus outside a child care centre in the NSW Southern tablelands on Wednesday afternoon, as temperatures continued to soar.
NSW Police were called to the scene in the small town of Yass, around 280km south-west of Sydney, at around 3pm after receiving allegations that the boy had been locked in the parked vehicle for several hours.
“Police are conducting inquiries after a two-year-old child was found in a vehicle in the state’s Southern tablelands today,” police said in a statement on Wednesday.
“It’s alleged the boy had been left in the vehicle unattended for approximately six hours.”
The child was taken to the nearby Yass District Hospital as a precaution where he was treated for dehydration. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, the child care centre confirmed in a post on Facebook, which has since been deleted, that the bus driver had been “suspended pending a full investigation by centre management”.
They also claimed they contacted paramedics and police straight away, adding that they are pleased to hear the child is doing well.
Inquiries are currently being undertaken by The Hume Police District with the matter also reported to Family and Community Services.
The devastating incident follows the death of a 22-month-old boy who was found unresponsive, having allegedly being locked in a hot car amid Sydney’s heatwave earlier this month.
Paramedics were called to a home in Chester Hill in Sydney’s west at around 3:30pm on February 3, but tragically found the boy unresponsive inside the home. NSW Police later confirmed they had received reports that he had been locked in a car outside the residence, as temperatures rose past 30℃.
Ambulance Victoria released staggering figures last year showing the amount of children being rescued from hot cars across Victoria alone. According to their report, paramedics in the state responded to 1587 callouts for people locked in cars across Victoria between September 1, 2017 and August 31, 2018.
Meanwhile, they said as many as 5,000 children are rescued from unattended cars across the country every year.