A TWO-year-old boy was flown to hospital yesterday afternoon after losing part of his finger at the Tesco Metro store in the town centre.
It is believed the child’s finger became trapped in a check-out barrier within the shop shortly before 3pm.
Rapid response paramedics were called, along with an ambulance, but the child was taken to Frenchay by the Wiltshire Air Ambulance, which had landed in Faringdon Road.
The toddler was described as being distressed and in considerable pain, so was given pain relief at the scene.
A spokesman for South Western Ambulance Service said: “We received a call shortly after 3pm to reports of a child being injured at the Tesco store in Swindon.
“An ambulance was dispatched along with two rapid response teams, one of which was from the Wiltshire Air Ambulance team.
“At the scene the child was in pain and distressed but behaving very well considering the situation. He was given pain relief and later taken to Frenchay Hospital by air.
“He has suffered a partial loss of one of his fingers.”
Tesco was shut for several hours while the child was treated and an investigation was carried out but was open again by 5.30pm.
Police and firefighters were also called to the scene to assist paramedics and help the helicopter to land and take off.
A Wiltshire Police spokesman said: “We were called out to assist the paramedics in carrying out their treatment of the child.
“We helped them to land the helicopter and later getting the child into the ambulance.”
The exact cause is not known but it is believed a cashier accidentally trapped the boy’s finger while closing a check-out gate.
John Ainslie, 41, of Old Town arrived at the scene shortly after the incident occurred.
He said: “When I got there the paramedics were treating the child and the woman with him was clearly very upset.
“I obviously hope the boy is okay as I have child myself.
“I am an interior designer by trade and I have said for some time it was an accident waiting to happen.
“When you are designing these barriers you have to take into account the worst case scenario.
“Hopefully, this will force them to change.”
A Tesco spokesman said: “We were very sorry to hear about the accident that took place in our store earlier today and we are doing all we can for the boy and his family. As a precaution we have removed the checkout barriers in the store while we conduct a thorough investigation.”