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Ex putting DCs at risk in a van - what do I do?

(21 Posts)
MadeUpNameForAnonymity Fri 10-Dec-10 18:38:02

I've just found out that my ex has been getting a mate to drive him and the DCs from school back to his house in a van. DD1 goes in the front with a seatbelt but according to DD2, she and ex just sit in the back on the floor shock

Ex lost his license for drink-driving a while back. He only sees the DCs for a few hours a week.

How do I handle this? I'm trying not to phone ex up and call him a stupid, lying twat. I could send a letter but it wouldn't get there before the next time ex is supposed to pick them up from school.

Help!

lowercase Fri 10-Dec-10 20:53:29

you can send a letter next day delivery.

MadeUpNameForAnonymity Fri 10-Dec-10 20:57:30

Not tonight I can't and he's next due to pick the DCs up on Monday sad

lowercase Fri 10-Dec-10 21:16:59

could you turn up unexpectedly and rumble him?

otherwise you will have to tell him you know and ask that he doesnt do it again.

BEAUTlFUL Fri 10-Dec-10 23:02:56

"How do I handle this? I'm trying not to phone ex up and call him a stupid, lying twat. I could send a letter but it wouldn't get there before the next time ex is supposed to pick them up from school."

I really don't get this. Why would you send a letter? Ring him up and say, "DD2 says she sits on the floor of your friend's van - is that true? You know that's not safe, what's the story".

Or wait outside his house after the school pickup Mon and see how they arrive.

whiteandnerdy Fri 10-Dec-10 23:37:22

Can I just say I spent many a day of my childhood spent in the back of a van. I have very fond memories of those times, and as long as you sit with your back against the driver/passenger seats, any sharp breaking or impacts simply press you into the seat your already sitting against.

Mind you I did have an old 24 volt lorry battery as a seat.

MadeUpNameForAnonymity Sat 11-Dec-10 00:12:37

The reason I asked was that if I phoned him and asked him then he would just deny it all. I should have mentioned that how much of a lying tosser he can be in my OP though. He has threatened to take me to court for access in the past so I thought that if it was in a letter then at least it would be something I could show the judge about how reckless he is.

On the one hand I can't believe he was so bloody stupid as to put DD2 in the back of a van without any kind of seat or seat belt. On the other hand I CAN believe he was that stupid and that's what's so sodding sad about the whole mess.

whiteandnerdy it's very dangerous and against the law. Even if you had your back to the driver's seat then if the van hit something else your head would whip backwards and hit solid metal. And what if a car went into the side or the back of the van? You wouldn't be restrained at all.

You can risk your skull like that if you want but I'm buggered if I'm going to let my DCs be put at that kind of stupid risk.

whiteandnerdy Sat 11-Dec-10 01:08:15

I dunno, the way you describe the dangers of myself riding in the back of a van, when clearly you have no idea of it's construction, strikes me that you maybe trying to justify yourself that your right and your ExP is wrong. Or your ExP doesn't care enough or as much about their children as maybe he should.

In addition why should you have mentioned about him lying and him threatening to take you to court for access. It just makes me think even more that your wanting to find reasons to find fault with your Ex. Hell, I know I do it enough ;-D it's only natural, however you do state that he's lost his license and only has them for a few hours. Clearly it's not an ideal situation but isn't there something supportive or positive you can do? I dunno it sounds like your Ex is trying to muddle through with help from his friends, isn't that we all try and do?

MrsRhettButler Sat 11-Dec-10 01:22:34

HOW FAR IS IT? CANT HE WALK?

ITS DANGEROUS AND ILLIEGAL YOU ARE NOT WRONG TO SAY SOMETHING

MrsRhettButler Sat 11-Dec-10 01:22:55

oh gosh, sorry for shouting blush

MrsRhettButler Sat 11-Dec-10 01:23:31

*illegal (been at the wine)

VivaLeBeaver Sat 11-Dec-10 01:25:43

you can ring the police (NOT 999) and discuss it with them, see if they will have a cop car waiting to stop them. I did this once on a mother at dd's nursery who NEVER put a seatbelt on her 3yo and he would be bouncing about the backseat every day.

KickArseQueen Sat 11-Dec-10 01:31:32

Whiteandnerdy, no I'm sorry , but on this one you are okaying something which is very dangerous.

Yes I myself have been in the back of a van without a seat or seatbelt, but many things have changed since then, the amount of vehicles on the road, and the law being just 2 of them.

It is stupid and reckless, if he wants to risk his own hide fine, but not his childrens. Sounds to me as though he isn't very good at risk assesing situations. I would ring him and tell him that you are not happy with the situation and that if he tries to transport them that way again you will call the police and report the van.

KickArseQueen Sat 11-Dec-10 01:38:10

Yes viva, been there too! Police are actually very good at pulling cars over and giving the parents a stern talking to round here. Can't believe how many people don't belt their kids in - or use boosters for babies.

whiteandnerdy Sat 11-Dec-10 01:50:26

I'm saying it was OK for myself and more importantly for my parents to ride in the back of a van. I don't believe that my parents were in anyway negligent or were putting me at undue risk. Clearly you may have a different opinion to the level of risk that this entailed and maybe you wouldn't allow your child to be transported in such a manner even knowing all the factors that they did. I still think a positive discussion is preferable than simply stigmatising people.

I've taken all my children on my motorcycle, I've bought leathers and motorcycle boots for them to reduce the risk if something does happen, however no matter how carefully I ride there will always be an element of risk. I'm not convinced this makes me an uncaring parent.

KickArseQueen Sat 11-Dec-10 02:03:50

Hmmm.... If someone is breaking the law and putting a child at risk of harm unecessarily against the wishes of their other parent then I do think that is disgraceful.

I have a motorbike. Some of my kids have been on a motorbike with dp recently, I don't think that is relevant to this really. However, if I had the choice between my dc's being on a bike/ in a sidecar, with me, lidded and leathered or in random mans van unbelted and unmentioned by a lieing ex h then I would choose the bike every time.

Aside from anything else, if the worst did happen, the people in the back of the van would not be insured, hard to get compensation for a potentially disabled child without any insurance.

whiteandnerdy Sat 11-Dec-10 02:40:50

I'm sorry I'm going to disagree with you, your previous post says "It is stupid and reckless, if he wants to risk his own hide fine, but not his childrens", and "Sounds to me as though he isn't very good at risk assesing situations." I'm sure someone could have written this about your DP taking your children on the motorcycle.

I still think discussing this would be better, clearly the risk is increased by the length of journey, is this a one-off, the speed of the vehicle, the maturity of the driver, can something better be sorted out, if so how soon.

KickArseQueen Sat 11-Dec-10 09:39:58

Hmm, I think you're just sticking up for him because he's a bloke wink but that is my vho. I also stand by my earlier post - its amazing how mny people like to c&p me!

Breaking the law regarding how you transport your kids when you have already had a ban yourself and are only gettng visits through the courts is "stupid and reckless" see I actully re-typed that - I know what I wrote so I don't need to c&p it.
wink
Its stupid because you know you are going to get found out sooner or later, getting nicked by the police with kids in the back of the van is going to cause problems for the drver and show the courts that you are not being sensible when you're having your dc's on visits - it also shows that you are not taking your kids concerns into account.

Its reckless because they could be hurt and if they were they wouldn't be covered by any insurance.

Yes the risk variables are a bit unknown, but then on the other hand how sensible is the driver if he's willing to have a kid and an adult in the back of his van in the 1st place??

My DP took my kids on his motorbike, with safety gear, off road on family land. Legal and thought through - not hiding what he was doing.

Its ok being reckless with your own safety, you can get away with things sometimes, but you shouldn't make someone else (especially a child) do something which is illegal could harm them and they don't want to do - that should be fairly obvious.


As you say, you are still a kid at heart.

whiteandnerdy Sat 11-Dec-10 12:14:43

I'm sorry I didn't read the bit about "only getting visits throught the courts", I read OP as saying "has threatened to take me to court for access in the past". I also can't find the bit in OP about them not wanting to get in the back of the van. As for labelling me sexist, maybe I am, but I've seen enough "men are evil, burn 'em" posts to know I wouldn't be alone grin.

Sorry, feeling like I'm starting to troll up this thread with my post not really adding anything.

Having ridden in the back of a Toyota Hiace Van over many years in my youth, I just think the OP supplies so little actual information it would be difficult for myself to assess the level of risk. But if it's going to make people happy hell I'll say he's evil and he should be burnt rah-rah-rah.

VivaLeBeaver Sat 11-Dec-10 13:33:19

Of course there's a risk if they're sat on the floor of a van. Its illegal for a reason, don't think the OP needs to provide more information than that. It doesn't matter one bit about the construction of the van. Some small kid rattling about in the back could still be killed if they fly from one end of the van to the other in a collision. There is plenty of research to show how dangerous it is to be a vehical with no seatbelt. And this isn't just a lack of seatbelt, its no carseat and not even a seat.

When I was a kid my parents used to let me ride in the boot for a treat! I don't think they were uncaring or reckless but awareness has changed now and there is a big culture shift as well as legislation shift into improving car safetly, specificaly of child passengers.

KickArseQueen Sun 12-Dec-10 17:32:56

whiteandnerdy - jolly good!!! <<<bangs gavel>>> Next!!!!!

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