A Perth childcare centre, in St George Terrace, has been fined $15,000 after conducting an emergency evacuation drill where three toddlers receiving second-degree burns to their feet.
The evacuation drill took place on December 2, 2019, at 2.30 pm, where the outside temperature was around 35 degrees, as toddlers were waking up from their afternoon naps and had no shoes on.
The emergency evacuation route passed through a couple of outdoor yards and a small section of each yard is exposed to direct sunlight, and the floor covering is rubberised soft fall and synthetic grass. Several children appeared distressed when passing through the first yard, crying and picking up their feet. A decision made by the Tribunal read.
Two toddles required treatment in a hospital burns unit while another was taken to a medical centre.
The supervisor aborted the drill as soon as the reaction of the children was realised and staff administered first aid to the three toddlers who had blistered feet once back inside.
The childcare centre showed genuine remorse for the incident and fully cooperated with the Department of Communities in relation to the Education and Care National Law safety breach.
Policies have been updated for all children to have shoes on at all times while outdoors, and the evacuation drill procedures have been reviewed to ensure any risks to the children are considered before announcing a drill.
The families of the injured children continue to be at the centre.
Perth Childcare Centre Fined $15,000 After Toddlers' Feet Burnt During A Fire Drill, WA Today, 8 September 2020