A CHILDMINDER was left horrified after children almost escaped a McDonald’s play area, into a car park, through an unsecured fire exit.

Katy Jepson said the “scary moment” was made worse by the ‘lack of concern’ from management when the issue was raised.

Katy was visiting the McDonald’s restaurant, In Somerford Road, Christchurch, on June 13 with her three-year-old daughter and a two-year-old she was caring for.

“They were running up and down playing What’s the Time Mr Wolf? so they were stood right at the end of the play area,” said Katy.

“When all of a sudden a couple opened the door and, the two-year-old especially who loves running towards an open door, tried to head towards it.”

Thankfully, Katy was very close to the children and was able to step in between them and the door however, she said that is not something she should have had to do.

“What would have happened if I had been down the other end with another child?”

She added when she visits the restaurant, she is always in the play area with the children, particularly due to their young age, but knows not all parents and carers do.

She said: “It’s the way the restaurant is designed, to let your kids in there while you order and wait for the food.”

She added that “no one’s saying you shouldn’t be watching your kids” however, the ‘inadequate seating’ in the play area and the glass window implies carers can supervise from outside.

“The manager said that every child in there should be supervised by an adult but there isn’t even enough space for every parent of every child.”

After receiving the “dismissive” response from restaurant staff, Katy raised her concerns with BCP Council’s health and safety team as well as McDonald’s itself.

A McDonald’s spokesperson said: “We’d like to apologise to the customer who felt that their concerns were not taken seriously.

“The safety and security of our customers is of the utmost importance to us and as such we will be taking extra security measures around the play area to continue to ensure everyone’s safety.”

Sophie Sajic, head of public protection at BCP Council, said: “Public safety is our top priority and we are working with the establishment to urgently address concerns.”