'Where is my child?': Mother demands answers after boy spends night in Melbourne Airport storeroom

The boys were able to make forts in the storeroom while they stayed overnight in Melbourne airport.
The boys were able to make forts in the storeroom while they stayed overnight in Melbourne airport.  Photo: Sunrise/Channel Seven

A nine-year-old boy has spent the night with two other children in a room filled with boxes at Melbourne Airport after his flight to Sydney was diverted.

A Queensland mother is now demanding answers after she says she wasn't informed her son was spending the night sleeping at the airport.

Virgin Australia has apologised for a "breakdown in communication" after the boy, who was flying as an unaccompanied minor to Sydney from Brisbane to visit his grandparents, slept in a room near the airline's lounge with two other children.

John Meredith, 9, said he was confused by the situation after his flight was diverted to Melbourne and he had to spend ...
John Meredith, 9, said he was confused by the situation after his flight was diverted to Melbourne and he had to spend the night at the airport.  Photo: Sunrise/Channel Seven

However, the airline says they "communicated regularly" with the child's nominated guardian - understood to be his grandparents - during the night.

The flight was diverted to Melbourne on Thursday night due to severe storms on the east coast.

The boy and the two other unaccompanied minors were given pillows and blankets and slept in the room near the Virgin Australia lounge as hotels in Melbourne were full due to the Grand Prix.

John Meredith, 9, said he was confused by the situation.

"Who am I going to be staying with? Where am I going to go? I'm not going to be with a family member," he told Seven News.

His mother says the family was not contacted by Virgin Australia and did not know where John had spent the night. The family is now demanding answers.

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"The scariest thing for me is not how my child was treated, it was, 'Where is my child?'" said mother Katie Meredith.

It is understood there were about 2000 people in the terminal at Melbourne Airport who were displaced on Thursday night due to the storms. Most people slept in the terminal, with about 400 people in the lounge.

The nine-year-old was put on the earliest flight to Sydney on Friday.

The boy's mother Katie Meredith.
The boy's mother Katie Meredith.  Photo: Sunrise/Channel Seven

In a statement, Virgin Australia said it apologised for any breakdown in communication with the family.

“In times of weather disruption, we do our best to accommodate guests onto other flights or provide accommodation when their flights have been diverted," the statement reads.

"We take the utmost care when transporting unaccompanied minors and aim to ensure their nominated guardians are aware of any developments as they arise.

"In this instance, our ground crew supervised the child and made him as comfortable as possible in a room in our Melbourne Airport Lounge ahead of his flight the following morning. We apologise for any breakdown in communication between our team and the child’s guardian during the course of the evening."

The airline says they followed all correct processes in looking after the child and had communicated "regularly" with the child's nominated guardian - understood to be his grandparents - throughout the night.

However, they said "regrettably" a text message from the guardian wasn't responded to by the team.

Melbourne Airport did not comment.