In Goodyear, Arizona, daily temperatures in July average 107° F. This past Wednesday, a sixteen-year-old teen with autism was left on his bus instead of being dropped off at school. The bus picked students up at 9:00 a.m. and took them to their daycares and schools, but the boy went unnoticed after everyone left the bus.
Procedure calls for the driver and caretakers to inspect every aisle on their bus to ensure no child is hurt or left behind. Protocol was ignored, however, as the driver parked the bus and exited without taking a proper headcount, leaving the teen stranded on the bus for three hours before he was found.
The teen is non-verbal, and was only discovered after his daycare, Precious Home Services[LINK TO THEIR WEBSITE], called the police at noon due to his absence. Nosa Ogie, the owner of the daycare, told 12 News that the staff reported that all children were present, despite not having actually checked.
Ogie also told 12 News [LINK AND QUOTE?] that the boy’s mother went to the daycare to find him, and only then did the staff consult the bus to find the missing teen still seated. The temperature was 107° F, which affected the boy’s health. The negligence on the staff’s behalf lead to the termination of both the driver and caregiver.
Ogie says he has reported his business to the Department of Economic Security[LINK] and will comply with any police investigation.
The teen was taken to the hospital for treatment of a heat-related issue.