A two-year-old boy and a four-month-old baby were trapped inside a car for about an hour at a parking lot at the Hong Kong airport Tuesday, causing some anxious moments for the parents.
According to a report in Ming Pao Daily News, a 36-year-old foreigner drove his new BMW X5 SUV to the outdoor carpark opposite Passenger Terminal 2 at the International Airport at around 8 am.
After parking the car, the driver and his 35-year-old wife stepped out to retrieve the luggage from the trunk of the vehicle. The pair then realized that the car was locked up with their two sons inside.
They had left the keys inside the car by accident and so couldn’t open the door, leaving the kids all by themselves in the vehicle.
Police were then called for help. Luckily the engine was still running and air-conditioning was still on, meaning there was no immediate danger of suffocation for the two children.
Rescue personnel arrived at the scene and the doors were finally opened in about an hour. The children were safe and uninjured, making the parents breathe a huge sigh of relief.
Responding to news of the incident, Ringo Lee Yiu-pui, chairman of the Institute of the Motor Industry Hong Kong, said the operating procedures could be different for car models equipped with automatic door-lock functions.
Some would automatically lock up when the car is set in motion, while some would lock up after a period of time, say one minute, even if the car is in a halt mode.
Lee reminded that drivers must switch off the engine after stopping a vehicle. The driver should leave a window open if he or she needs to get off the car for a short while, while having old people or babies onboard.
In the unfortunate event of a lock-up, it is best to break the small triangular window to manually unlock the car, Lee said.
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