A four-year-old boy tried to walk home from a bus depot after being left on his school bus.
John Robertson was travelling home to North Kessock from Munlochy Primary School on the Black Isle last Friday.
But he did not get off at his stop and ended up, unnoticed, in the bus in D&E Coaches’ Inverness Longman depot, about three miles and across the A9’s Kessock Bridge from where he lives.
The boy was spotted close to Inverness Caledonian Thistle’s stadium.
He told his parents he had waited onboard the mini bus after it stopped at the depot, expecting the driver to come and find him.
After a time, still on his own inside the bus unnoticed, he managed to open the door and set out to find his way home.
D&E Coaches said it was “extremely disappointed” by the circumstances of the incident. It has dismissed the driver for gross misconduct.
Highland Council, which contracts D&E Coaches as a provider of its school transport, and Police Scotland have begun investigations into the incident.
John’s parents, Nikki and John, had thought he was late home because the school bus had been delayed by bad weather.
His father was waiting for John at home where the boy should have been dropped off.
It was the boy’s fifth time taking the school bus. Usually he was taken to and from school by car by his parents, but the car had broken down.
When he still had not come home, his family called the bus company and were told that John had been dropped off. In a follow up call they were told that he had not got on the bus.
John’s parents began calling friends, family and police in an effort to find him.
Family and friends also made searches of North Kessock and Munlochy for the youngster.