Boy (5) critical after being hit by truck on his way to school
A young boy is in a critical condition after being crushed by an articulated truck on his way to school.
The five-year-old was walking with his mother and older sister when the large vehicle, which was making a delivery to a local supermarket, collided with the two young children.
The shocked driver attempted to move the truck as the boy was wedged underneath one of its wheels.
Emergency services were alerted and members of the Garda Traffic Corps and paramedics rushed to the scene in Ongar, west Dublin.
The young boy, believed to be a Polish national, was rushed to Temple Street Children's University Hospital. He is being treated for injuries to his chest and lungs and is described as being in a "critical but stable" condition.
His older sister suffered minor injuries.
The scene was sealed off while members of the Garda Technical Bureau carried out an examination of the scene.
It is understood a cursory examination of the truck found there were no technical defects.
The driver was fully co-operative with gardaí. "In the preliminary stages of the investigation, it seems that this was just a tragic accident, rather than fault being attributed to anyone," a source said. "Gardaí feared the worst when they arrived at the scene but the child is currently in hospital in a stable but critical condition.
"The driver was shocked but was very co-operative with gardaí at the scene," the source added.
Local Sinn Féin councillor Paul Donnelly expressed his sympathies to the young boy's family and described the incident as "absolutely tragic".
"It is a truly horrible incident to have happened, but unfortunately it was an accident waiting to happen.
"We constantly have the situation whereby parents and children are taking their lives into their hands every time they attend their local school," he said.
"There is no parking or drop-off facilities and parents were advised to park in the car park in the village.
"The problem is that massive trucks delivering goods to the shops also use the same car park, often double parking. We need a real solution to this" Gardaí appealed for witnesses.