NEW YORK (CBS 2) — A quick thinking bus driver jumped into action after making an alarming discovery while on the job.
As William Allan started his shift around 4 a.m. Wednesday morning along Putnam Avenue in Ridgewood, Queens, he spotted a 2-year-old boy, wandering on the sidewalk.
“I noticed out of the corner of my eye there’s a small child standing here, unclothed and shivering. Immediately I stopped the bus and I came around…he immediately saw me and put his arms up in the air and started crying,” Allan told CBS 2′s Cindy Hsu. “I immediately picked the child up and called 911.”
Allan took the little boy, who was dressed only in his underwear, into his warm bus and waited for police.
When police arrived, they started searching for the boy’s family. Just a few doors down, authorities found an open apartment door where the child’s 1-year-old brother was asleep in a crib with no adults home.
The next door neighbor said just a few months ago, he found the two boys alone on their front stoop.
“I see them both right there and I [said] ‘holy cow.’ I couldn’t believe it,” Chhatwal Kishore said.
The children’s father eventually showed up and told police he thought their mother had been home, Allan said.
Allan, who has been driving a bus for 12 years, has two children of his own and said the whole time he held the crying little boy on the bus, it was heartbreaking. The only time the toddler spoke was when a subway train went by.
“He saw the train go past and he said ‘choo choo’ and those are the only words that he actually said,” Allan said.
Allan said every time he sees a train from now on, he would think of the little guy and hope that he was safe.
The boys are in the custody of children’s services, and police said they were still searching for the mother.
Allan has been nominated for a commendation.