Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 13 November 2019

Six-year-old dies after being left on Dubai bus in soaring heat

The vehicle reached its destination at 8am but the child was not noticed until hours later

In a tweet on Saturday, Dubai Police said a six-year-old child had died. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National
In a tweet on Saturday, Dubai Police said a six-year-old child had died. Jeffrey E Biteng / The National

A six-year-old has died after being left on a bus in Dubai in soaring temperatures.

Police said the child had been in a vehicle belonging to a Quran memorisation centre in Al Quoz when the tragedy occurred.

All other youngsters on the bus are understood to have disembarked when it reached its destination at around 8am on Saturday.

But the six-year-old remained on board and was only spotted much later in the day. Emergency services were unable to save the youngster.

“A 6-year-old child of Asian nationality died in a bus belonging to a Qur'an memorisation centre in Al Quoz after all the children [got off] and closed the doors,” Dubai Police said in a brief statement on Twitter.

Temperatures reached up to 48°C in some parts of the country last week and climbed to around 45°C on Saturday in Dubai.

The cause of the child's death is not yet known although instances of youngsters succumbing to the intense heat of the UAE's summer have occurred before.

In October 2014, Nizaha Aalaa, 3, died from heat exhaustion after being accidentally locked inside her school bus in Abu Dhabi.

The driver of the vehicle was later sentenced to three years in jail for negligence, as was a supervisor.

Meanwhile, the owner of the transport company that leased the vehicle to Al Worood Academy Private School in the capital, and a school administrator, were also found guilty of charges related to her death.

Al Worood Academy was eventually ordered to close as a result of the incident. It was also ordered to pay a fine of Dh150,000.

Responding to the news of the six-year-old's death, one Twitter user urged authorities to better train bus drivers to avoid future fatalities.

"Very sad to hear," the user wrote. "Authorities should give more awareness classes or training sessions to school employees and drivers.

"Buses should keep one window open before switch off and parking [and] bus drivers should double check inside buses."

Updated: June 15, 2019 11:27 PM

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