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To have complained to the local police today?

(31 Posts)
lisbey Tue 22-Sep-09 21:01:39

When I collected by DSs from school today there was the usual traffic chaos around the gates cause by illegal and inconsiderate parking.

However, today it was worse than usual because a great big "Mobile Police Office" van was parked on the zig-zags about 10 yards from the zebra crossing. This meant children/families trying to cross the road, had to walk to the centre of the road before they could see around the van and traffic certainly wouldn't have seen any child who stepped onto the crossing without checking.

I was a bit put out and then DS2 pipes up "that van shouldn't be parked there" and I thought no it shouldn't, so I phoned the local police station to make the points:

1) No-one should be parked on the zig-zags by a zebra crossing at any time.
2)it is particularly dangerous/inconsiderate to do it as the school finishes
3)Shouldn't police be leading by example, both in terms of getting parents to park correctly and also demonstrating to the children that the law applies to everyone

I was very polite and friendly and didn't expect any action to be taken, just an acknowledgement that it shouldn't have happened and commitment that it wouldn't happen again. Whilst I appreciate it wasn't the biggest sin in the world, I didn't think my points were unreasonable. Do you?

curiositykilled Tue 22-Sep-09 21:03:59

Excellent! Stick it to 'the man', go you!

HecatesTwopenceworth Tue 22-Sep-09 21:04:21

nope. not at all.

the police don't like being told off though grin

what did they say?

missingtheaction Tue 22-Sep-09 21:04:24

I think you were more than reasonable! I hope every other adult did the same thing. In fact, I hope someone went and knocked on the window and told them to their faces!

LynetteScavo Tue 22-Sep-09 21:07:05

I would have been furious!

(but then I'm easily wound up on the school run)

Stephief Tue 22-Sep-09 21:08:14

I think you had every right to do it. Our school has just had markings painted everywhere around it so no one can park there, and yet every day at school pick up time, the pcso's pull up on the markings to fine any parent who dares stray over the line. Its a joke!

pinkmagic1 Tue 22-Sep-09 21:08:17

Very dangerous and they would be super quick to give you a fine for doing the same thing. Good for you!

lisbey Tue 22-Sep-09 21:32:40

Thanks for asking Hecate - It was the Police reaction that made me wonder if I was BU.

A constable called me back within about 10 mins to say it had been parked there for only 15 secs while the Sergeant got out to deal with the parking problems. Well, it hadn't it had been there while I walked across the playground and 500 yards to my house, so it might not have been for very long, but was at least 10 mins. I expressed my disappointment firstly that they'd tried to justify it, because surely anytime when children are trying to cross is too long and secondly that someone was being untruthful. She became quite aggressive at this point and said she'd get Sergeant to call. I said no need, I just wanted to make sure they were aware.

Anyway Sarg does call and spent 40 mins (yes 40) almost shouting at me about how they were in the area giving "gold star" service because of a recent spate of burglaries and how grateful I should be for the "Gold Star" service and how they'd just stopped to deal with the dangerous parking and shouldn't I be grateful for that etc etc.

I was shocked that they wouldn't listen to a member of the public, to be spoken to like this, that they tried to justify it rather than just accept it shouldn't have happened, that they'd spend so much time on it, but also that the "complaint" was handled so appallingly badly. I've only spoken to a police officer once before and I won't be in a rush to do it again.

groundhogs Tue 22-Sep-09 23:39:37

I'd put it in writing now actually... make it official.

We all know that if it were one of us, parked there, and saying that we were only there for 15 seconds or whatever, it wouldn't cut any ice.

Aren't those zig-zags applicable to all traffic, at all times of the day, and it is absolutley imperative that they are kept clear at all times, especially at school letting out time...

No, don't let this one drop. Stick it to em.

Oh and what the heck has Gold star service on burglaries got to do with parking and obscurring a children's school crossing?? I didn't understand that one...

GrimmaTheNome Tue 22-Sep-09 23:47:13


They'd stopped to deal with dangerous parking... by parking dangerouslyhmm

I think you were quite right to raise the issue with them, and am quite appalled by the responses from the police.

sunnydelight Wed 23-Sep-09 00:19:05

Contact your MP, your complaint was totally reasonable, the police response was not. There is no point in complaining further to the police where your complaint will be investigated by another member of the police and no doubt you will get some "blah blah" letter in six months time - they never admit they're wrong!!!

1dilemma Wed 23-Sep-09 00:30:36

so even they don't know whether they were dealing with dangerous parking or burglaries grin

had sirens been wailing and lights flashing then OK but it sounds like they'd nipped out to do a bit of paperwork was there really nowhere else for them to park?

(I sympathise with you on this one our school is like Picadilly circus at pick-up time but it's the parents)

WhereYouLeftIt Wed 23-Sep-09 00:31:51

I would also be inclined to escalate the complaint, I could not accept this attempt to bully you. Not sure which route I'd go for - writing to Chief, writing to PCC, MP or local press. Did any other parents notice the van there? Would they be willing to complain to police along the lines of "I understand you are claiming to have only be parked for 15 sec, this is not the case blah blah". Nothing quite like a united front for making people back down IME.

HecatesTwopenceworth Wed 23-Sep-09 06:46:46

I think you should go to the paper grin They'd LOVE to run that story!!!

One rule for Them and another for Us!!

diddl Wed 23-Sep-09 07:30:22

I´d complain.

They have no right to shout.

And whatever they were doing they don´t have to park illegally , do they?

OK, an emergency you might accept it.

Coudn´t they have parked in the sschool grounds?

Longtalljosie Wed 23-Sep-09 07:40:17

I'd complain to the local MP - and please do it if you want to - I once had a bad experience with an arrogant police officer. My purse had been stolen and they'd run amok with my credit cards - I was told to call if I had more information - and when I did have something to tell them, a policewoman said to me "don't you think we have more important things to deal with?" and hung up on me. I still really wish I'd complained, and that was a good seven years ago...

diddl Wed 23-Sep-09 07:43:23

Would they accept you parking there "just for a few seconds"?

AvrilH Wed 23-Sep-09 09:13:31

I agree, send the story to a newspaper

FabBakerGirlIsBack Wed 23-Sep-09 09:16:10

You did the right thing.

The police have tried to bully you.

They really do not like being told what to do.

You MUST take this further.

DoNotPressTheRedButton Wed 23-Sep-09 09:22:51

We have a similar situation at school- I've been hit by a car as a result of idiotic aprking, and seen a far more severe accident

yet the only car I have ever seen threatened with penalties was the SN taxi dropping ds3 off after school hmm (becuase I ahve to collect another SN child he has to be dropped at the school, the twat parents aprk in the disabled spot down the road and everywhere else to be ahd)

Easy targets- the people who an't argue back and are scared for their job- that could mean either ds3 has to be home educated or dh has to leave Uni to be home to collect. Wonderful

(I did complain to Police theya sked for my number to arrange a meeting and never contacted me again- praying it has gone away but tehre's been no patrol since)

I mean though- a taxi carrying disabled infants- <<sob>>

spongebrainmaternitypants Wed 23-Sep-09 09:24:07

How appalling - the parking was bad enough but his reaction was totally out of order.

I would write to the senior police officer at his station and copy that letter into your local MP. If that achieves nothing, then your local paper is the place to go.

Don't let him get away with it.

Ninks Wed 23-Sep-09 09:33:28

God that's awful! I second spongebrain - M.P then local paper.

MagNacarta Wed 23-Sep-09 09:37:10

Yes, that's a good idea escalate the complaint so that it takes up more police time hmm.

I appreciate that they are clearly in the wrong, but tbh I'd rather the police spent their time on more serious matters than dealing with this complaint.

spongebrainmaternitypants Wed 23-Sep-09 09:43:42

shock @ Magnacarta!

What a cop out (pardon the pun!) - this could well have been a very serious incident, parking on zig zags outside a school causes accidents, and the attitude of the police officer was appalling.

I'm sorry but I don't see why he should get away with it just to enable them to "spend time on more serious matters".

The police are there to serve all of the community and they should bloody well learn to be more respectful too when speaking to a member of the public making a perfectly justified complaint.

They do themselves no favours behaving like this.

PuppyMonkey Wed 23-Sep-09 09:44:49

Your local paper will be very interested. Where are you?

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