Toddler on bus 'stabbed by needle filled with heroin'

  • Three-year-old Alysha Zambra is awaiting the results of an HIV test
  • Incident occured on board a Dublin Bus
  • Figures show drug-induced mortality in Ireland is three times the European average
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The Independent Online

A toddler on a Dublin bus has been stabbed by a needle reportedly filled with heroin. 

Three-year-old Alysha Zambra sat at the back of the bus with her mother before coming into contact with the needle, according to the Irish Mirror. She was taken to hospital in an ambulance after her mother, Stacie, raised the alarm where she is now awaiting the results of an HIV test.

The family were on a Dublin Bus, a major public transport provider in the republic's capital. 

This country is ruined by heroin.

Alysha Zambra's mother, Stacie

“No parent should ever have to go through this," Stacie told the Irish Mirror. "This country is ruined by heroin. You pay your money to go on the bus and you shouldn’t be expected to scan for filthy needles. It just makes me sick.

The company experienced a similar incident earlier this year, when a six-year-old boy was also stabbed by a dirty needle. 

Dublin struggles with a drugs problem, with heroin in particular an issue for the city, according to a report by Vice in 2013. The report claims current government practices in dealing with drug addiction are ineffective.

The most recent figures accessible in the European Drug Report 2015 date back to 2013.

The report concludes that the drug-induced mortality rate among adults aged 15–64 in Ireland was 58.5 deaths per million in 2011, more than three times the 2013 European average of 17.2 deaths per million.

The majority of all deceased were male and, on average, victims were 36.5 years old.

A spokesperson for Dublin Bus told the Irish Mirror: "Dublin Bus has confirmed that an incident occurred on Route 13 travelling inbound yesterday afternoon at approximately 14:00 involving a young passenger.

"Passengers were transferred onto another service. Dublin Bus also has strict maintenance and cleaning procedures in place internally. All protocols and procedures are regularly reviewed.

"Incidents of this nature are a rare occurrence and the overall level of anti-social behaviour is low and has decreased over the last number of years."