A mother has been charged with neglect after she allegedly left her three young children locked in a car in extreme heat for 45 minutes.
The youngsters aged between two and eight were said to have been left in Carlisle city centre amid temperatures of 40 degrees centigrade inside the vehicle.
Police said members of the public were alerted to the situation when the children sounded the horn while it was parked in Chapel Street at about midday on Monday.
It is thought the mother, who has not been named by Cumbria Constabulary, had gone to visit a store.
Police removed the children from the vehicle and arrested the woman when she returned.
The children did not require hospital treatment but were left in a traumatised state after being removed from the car, a police spokesman said.
The local woman aged in her 20s will appear before Carlisle magistrates on Monday, July 11 accused of three counts of neglect.