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4-year-old in coma after being locked in overheated bus

A four-year-old child remained in a coma for the fifth day on Tuesday, after being left in an overheated kindergarten bus for nearly eight hours.

The Gwangju District Police said the teacher in charge, Jeong, 28, the chief teacher Lee, 34, the bus driver Lim, 51, and the kindergarten director Park, 52, have been booked for professional negligence.

The four are accused of neglecting the victim between 9:10 a.m. and 4:40 p.m. on July 29. The hottest temperature that day was 35.5 degrees Celsius. 


When he was found inside the locked bus, the victim’s body temperature was 42 degrees Celsius. He is being treated at a hospital in Gwangju.

The teacher in charge did not check the number of children boarding and leaving the bus, while the bus driver did not notice the victim when he washed the vehicle and put it into a garage. The chief teacher did not question the victim’s absence.

The kindergarten was on summer vacation between July 27 and 29, during which it held smaller classes for some 60 voluntary applicants.

The police plan to get statements from the eight other kindergarteners who rode the bus with the victim.

By Lim Jeong-yeo (