A five-year-old boy is fighting for his life after plunging 50ft over the side of an escalator and landing on a clothing rail at a Primark store.
The youngster, who has not been named, was rushed to hospital with serious head injuries after dropping from “one floor to another” as he toppled over the edge of the escalator on Wednesday afternoon.
Shocked onlookers at the bargain-store in Nottingham city centre described seeing the boy’s mother on the floor screaming in hysterics as her son lay injured following the horrific fall.
One woman, who did not want to be named, said: “I saw him fall from one floor to another and he landed on some clothes rails. It was really awful.”
Shopper Craig Adams added: “There was a young lad taken out on a stretcher, he looked in a bad way. The store was closed all afternoon and everybody was held inside for an hour.”
Another witness said: “I could clearly see one woman sat on the floor, screaming and crying.
“It must have been the boys mother. She was in absolute hysterics.”
Dozens of shoppers were evacuated from the shop after the accident, which happened at around 2pm, and the store remained closed for the rest of the day.
An ambulance service spokesman said the boy was taken to Nottingham’s Queen’s Medical Centre with head injuries.
A hospital spokesman said the boy was in the children’s intensive care unit where he remained in a critical but stable condition yesterday.
A Primark spokesman said: “Primark’s Nottingham store closed early following an incident in the store.
“The safety of our customers in our stores is of paramount concern to us. We are now working with the relevant authorities to investigate this incident.”
Nottingham City Council’s health and safety officers have now launched an investigation into how the boy came to fall.
A city council spokesman said: “We have been notified of an accident at Primark and, as health and safety in retail premises is overseen by councils, our health and safety officers are investigating the circumstances.
“We are unable to say anything further at this stage.”