Mother wails as she watches son, 4, choke to death on kindergarten CCTV

Mother wails as she watches son, 4, choke to death on kindergarten CCTV
PHOTO: Video screengrab

"Why didn't a teacher come to his rescue?" a mother sobbed as she watched her son's last moments on the computer screen.

CCTV footage showed the four-year-old boy struggling to dislodge a piece of cake he had choked on.

His classmates continued with their meals around him, unaware that he was in great distress.

On Sept 10, a kindergarten teacher in Hunan, China, left a group of children at the table after serving them lunch.

Moments later, a boy started to choke on his food. He was seen desperately digging at his mouth and coughing uncontrollably.

The choking, however, went unnoticed for about three minutes.

His teacher later returned to the table, attempted to remove the cake he was choking on, and rushed the child to a hospital within eight minutes.

But it was already too late to save him.

After a discussion with the deceased boy's parents, the kindergarten has since assumed all responsibility for the incident.

If you encounter a choking child, here are some tips from the National Health Service UK on how to help:

For children over a year old, try giving them back blows if they are conscious:

- Lay the child face down on your lap or support the child in a forward-leaning position

- Give five back blows from behind

If back blows didn't help to relieve the choking, give abdominal thrusts to help dislodge the foreign object:

Graphic: The Straits Times

- Stand or kneel behind the child

- Clench your fist, place it between the navel and ribs

- Grasp your fist with your other hand and pull in inwards and upwards

- Repeat for up to five times

*Be careful not to injure the lower ribcage.

After doing so, assess the condition of the child. If the object is not expelled and the child is conscious, repeat abdominal thrusts and call for help. Do not leave the child alone.

It is also best to take the child to see a doctor even if the foreign object has been removed.

If the choking child is unconscious, here's how you can help:

- Place them on a firm, flat surface, shout for help, and call the emergency hotline.

- Open the child's mouth and remove the object if it's clearly visible and within reach

- Start cardiopulmonary resuscitation

- Do not leave the child alone

minlee@sph.com.sg

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