Six days on from the tragedy that made national headlines and rocked parents across the country, the father of a three-year-old boy who died after being left in a hot car has spoken out.
Newaz Hasan says he still can’t understand what led him to forget his son Arikh was strapped into his car seat for six hours inside the family’s Toyota Corolla sedan on a 35-degree day, he told the Daily Telegraph.
“I still don’t really know how it happened,” he told the publication. “There was nothing on my mind, I wasn’t distracted. Nothing. I just forgot.”
‘Silence made me forget he was there’
February 2 was just like any other Thursday for the Sydney father, who had dropped his two sons off at school and daycare every day for the past 18 months.
But after taking his six-year-old to Glenfield Public School, just five kilometres away from the family home, he failed to make the trip to daycare.
“I would normally talk to my son on the way to daycare, you know, we would chat, but because he was asleep on this day, the car was silent,” Mr Hasan told the Telegraph. “I think that silence just made me forget his was there.”
After driving back to his Glenfield house, the senior banking analyst then spent the next six hours working from home before getting back into the car just before 3pm to pick his eldest son up from school.
Still he didn’t realise little Arikh was in the back seat. It wasn’t until he had collected the older boy and opened the back door to let his son in that he saw the three-year-old.
Grabbing his unconscious child, he ran into a nearby shop where he performed CPR until paramedics arrived but it was too late for Arikh, and he died at the scene.
A dad’s heartbreaking plea
The distraught father who is struggling to come to terms with what happened is now speaking out to ensure a tragedy like this never happens to another family.
“I just want to say to other parents, please always be 120 per cent sure where your kids are,” he told the Daily Telegraph. “If I can help another parent be more alert so this doesn’t happen again, then that is something positive to come from this.”
While the NSW police investigation into the incident is continuing, no charges have been laid.
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