Kids swelter in locked car: woman to face court

SHOPPERS in the Anson Street car park on Tuesday, January 15, were alarmed to find three young children locked in a dark blue vehicle and forced to endure temperatures of at least 40 to 45 degrees.

A 23-year old woman, believed to be the young boys’ mother, returned to the vehicle in the Woolworths car park in Anson Street at the same time as police arrived to free the children after receiving a call from a concerned member of the public.

Initial investigations suggest the children, aged one, two and seven years old, were left in the car at 2pm for about 10 minutes.

Police spoke to the woman at the scene and issued her with a court attendance notice to appear in Orange Local Court.

According to police the woman had visited a nearby shopping centre to pick up items for the children.

Canobolas Local Area Command Inspector Bruce Grassick said when police arrived at the scene one of the children appeared distressed and another was asleep.

Inspector Grassick said all the children were red-faced, sweating and had elevated temperatures, however they did not require medical treatment.

“The woman co-operated with police when she arrived and fortunately no one was injured,” Inspector Grassick said.

“She was apologetic and upset.”

Inspector Grassick said the incident proved a timely reminder of the dangers of leaving children unattended in vehicles on hot days.

He said police would have been within their rights to enter the vehicle if the woman had not returned when she did.

“Significant health concerns and possibly even death can result if people leave children unsupervised in vehicles,” he said.

Inspector Grassick said leaving children for even a small amount of time can prove detrimental.

He said it was against the law to leave a child locked in an unattended vehicle and police could issue fines of up to $22,000 under the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act of 1998.

* A 31-year-old woman is expected to be charged after allegedly leaving her nine-month-old son in a vehicle at Lakemba on Tuesday, January 14.

Police found the baby in the backseat of a car at 10pm and forced entry into the vehicle to removed the distressed baby.

Investigations are continuing and the woman is expected to be issued with a court attendance notice.

Last year 19 people in NSW were charged with causing distress or injury after leaving a child in a vehicle.

tracey.prisk@fairfaxmedia.com.au

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