The parents of a 10-month-old boy have slammed a daycare centre after staff failed to call an ambulance when their son was burned by bleach.
Blake Nilssen suffered second-degree burns after tipping an unattended bucket containing boiling water and bleach on himself, The Sun reports.
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But staff at Little Dreams Nursery in Aberdeen left him for an hour while waiting for his parents to arrive instead of calling for an ambulance.
When mum Ellie Johnson, 27, and dad Daryl Nilssen, 31, arrived, the ten-month-old was covered in blisters and screaming.
The Care Inspectorate has now upheld all ten complaints the couple made against the nursery.
They have recommended eight immediate improvements – including making sure staff are trained in first aid.
“Blake faces being scarred for life and now we have a constant fear of knowing who to trust to take care of our son in the future,” the mum said.
“Little Dreams Nursery should be closed. This is utterly indefensible.”
Blake, now aged one, was in the “baby room” at the nursery on November 4 when the horror unfolded.
He had toppled the bucket on himself while trying to stand up – with staff calling Ellie and telling her it was just “full of water”.
When she arrived, she was told there was a “bit of bleach in the water” and claimed there was “no urgency”.
But when she opened the door, she discovered her baby stripped to his nappy and vest with his limbs covered in cling film and paper towels.
“We opened the door and heard the most horrific screaming,” Ellie said.
“It was chilling. Then we realised it came from our little boy.
“There’s no words to describe the fear we felt at that moment.
“He was screaming, his skin was red all over and there was an overwhelming smell of bleach with liquid running down his legs and arms from burst blisters.”
Ellie and Daryl grabbed the tot and raced to A&E – revealing he passed out on the journey from the pain.
Once at Aberdeen Royal Infirmary, medics repeatedly rinsed Blake in a special shower room for over 90 minutes.
A plastic surgeon also treated his blisters and his burns were later dressed in six layers of bandages.
“Blake is now on the road to recovery but this road is a long one,” Ellie said.
“His physical scars will likely be permanent – we just pray the mental ones won’t – so our focus now is making sure Blake is happy and healthy.
“But we still don’t have answers to the most obvious question – why was a bucket with boiling bleach left in a baby room? This wasn’t an accident – it was blatant negligence.”
The Care Inspectorate launched an immediate investigation and carried out an on-site inspection on November 11.
Investigators found staff gave “differing accounts” of what happened and described the nursery supervision as “ineffective”.
The nursery was also slammed for their use of paper towels in treating the baby and failing to call an ambulance in a damning report.
Officials added: “It is our considered view that the inactions taken by the staff may have caused further complications to Blake’s injuries.
“Staff should have contacted the emergency services, immediately.
“They would have been able to give the right advice while awaiting an ambulance which would have minimised the pain and discomfort Blake must have been experiencing.”
Ellie and Daryl are now considering taking legal action against the nursery and are speaking out to warn others.
Neil Davidson, Partner at Digby Brown Solicitors in Aberdeen, is now supporting the young family.
“What happened to Blake is horrendous. The trauma he and his parents experienced will endure for a long time so I praise their courage in speaking out,” he said.
“As parents we place the highest trust in those who care for our children and the Care Inspectorate quite rightly demanded improvements at this nursery.
“We will do all we can to help this young family recover and move on following this awful incident.”
The nursery said: “This was a very serious incident which was clearly deeply distressing for the child involved and the family. We take the safety of all the children in our care extremely seriously and whilst this was an isolated incident, we have fully investigated the causes.
“We reported the incident to the Care Inspectorate and worked with them to put in place new training and operational practices. We have been disappointed by some aspects of the reports from the Care Inspectorate and have appealed the findings, these discussions are still ongoing.
“However, this appeal process does not detract from the focus we have at the nursery to ensure we are operating safely.”
This article originally appeared in The Sun and was reproduced with permission.