A FOUR-year-old boy miraculously escaped serious injury after falling down two levels of a Hereford multi-storey car park.

Alex Gardiner was on level five of the Garrick House car park when he fell through a gap in the barriers and down two floors.

His fall was partially cushioned as he bounced off a car bonnet on the fourth floor before miraculously passing through another gap on his way down.

The St Thomas Cantilupe School pupil was found by two strangers before being taken by ambulance to Hereford County Hospital.

But Alex, from Newton Farm, amazingly only sustained a bump to the head and was back at school the following day.

His mother Nicky was with him and his brother Jake when the accident happened.

"I heard a thud and I saw him lying on the floor," said Nicky, who was taking bags out of her car when the accident happened.

"Two men were shouting to keep him still in case he had a bad injury - it was horrifying."

She thanked the two men who were on the first on the scene while Alex's grandmother Ricky Griffiths said the accident should be a warning sign to other parents.

"I think that the council should put something in place to stop people falling down, because it's easily done," she said.

"Parents should be warned about it."

The multi-storey car park was closed for five months last year so that major refurbishment could take place.

But, Shane Hancock, parking manager at Herefordshire Council, said that the gaps were unaffected by it.

"A full health and safety check was completed after the refurbishment and I would reassure users of the car park that the circumstances of this incident were very unusual," said Mr Hancock.

"I am unaware of anything similar in the 25 plus years that the car park has been open.

"It must have been quite frightening for both the child and his family, but we are pleased to hear that he was back at school."

Mr Hancock added that an independent health and safety review will now take place for the part of the structure that Alex fell down.