Five-Year-Old Forgotten; Dies in School Bus

August 23, 2007 Updated: August 23, 2007

Wu Ziyu, a child attending the Yinzuo Bilingual Kindergarten in Jinan City, Shandong Province, was left in a school bus for nine hours. He was already dead when his body was found.

According to the Tianyan Zatan Forum, at about 7 a.m. on August 8, 2007, Wu boarded a school bus. He and a few others were playing games in the isle when the driver hit the brakes. They fell to the ground. Two teachers on the school bus yelled at the children and told them to sit tightly in their seats. The teachers also told them that when the bus arrived at the kindergarten, they would not be allowed to exit the bus.

When the bus reached the kindergarten, the two teachers got off the bus first and told the students to exit. The other children who were caught playing games also got off the bus. However, Wu, always following the teachers' words, did not dare to exit. He sat quietly in the back.

The teachers did not check whether anyone was left on the bus, and failed to count the number of children attending school. Instead of cleaning the bus as required, the bus driver parked the bus and left with the bus locked up.

At about 5 p.m., the bus driver opened the door to the bus and found Wu collapsed on the floor. He was taken to Qianfoshan Hospital. Doctors believe that the child died at around 3 p.m. from hyperthermia.

The temperature in Jinan was well above 90 degrees that day. With no windows open, the temperature in the bus could have reached 120 to 150 F.

The kindergarten tried to conceal the facts after the tragedy. At about 5:40 p.m., Director Xu of the Kindergarten told Wu's mother on the phone that Wu was in the emergency room at Qianfoshan Hospital due to oxygen deprivation.

Wu's mother grew suspicious and asked other children in Wu's class. She then learned what happened.

Yinzuo Bilingual Kindergarten is the most expensive commercial kindergarten in the area. Its brochure describes it as having “a first-class management system, a group of first-class managers,” which fostered “future elites.”