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A three-year-old Invercargill boy was airlifted to Dunedin Hospital after being hit by a car in Oamaru yesterday afternoon.
The incident happened in the access-way between Eden and Coquet Sts, near Peter Pan Bakery, about 3pm.
Sergeant Blair Wilkinson, of Oamaru, said the boy was in a stable condition in Dunedin Hospital last night.
Police had spoken to the driver and a number of witnesses and inquiries were continuing, Sgt Wilkinson said.
A witness, who did not want to be named, described seeing a car's brake lights come on suddenly, followed by a "sickening scream''.
"I was just talking on my phone and I saw the brake lights of a vehicle come on and then I just heard an almighty scream,'' the witness said.
"I did a double take and I looked and I could just make out a dark form under the car.
"I hung up and dialled 111 and started running down towards it.''
The child did not have long to wait for treatment - the incident had occurred just metres from the Oamaru St John station.
"Before I'd given too many details [to 111] the ambulance was already there,'' he said.
The access way was busy at the time of the incident, the witness said, and about 10 people rushed to the child's aid.