How can I get my Dad to stop driving?


#1

My father was diagnosed with Parkinson's about 9 years ago now, a few years ago we grew concerned that he wasn't fit to drive, as he had called me up to tell me he was lost and didn't know where he was when in the car, and would continuously scrape the car mysteriously and things like this. When this was broached with his nurse, she had suggested his licence might be revoked and he reacted incredibly badly and became depressed, the whole issue was dropped and he continued driving. 

Recently he has been having more scrapes, seems far more frail and I am genuinely concerned that he is not fit to drive, but given his previous reaction, am not sure how to approach this. He is very stubborn, and I'm not sure he will willingly stop driving of his own accord, but am worried that he may end up in a more serious accident. 

If anyone has any advice it would be appreciated?


#2
My husband had his license changed to a 3 yr one when he was diagnoised last year. He drives as part of his job. Hes been told that he will probably be called for an assessment in 2019 and in the letter from DVLA it states that if his condition or ability to drive changes before he must contact DVLA immediately as it is illegal to contine driving until he has been assesed....also our insurance told us that our insurance will be void if my husband contines to drive knowing his condition has changed ...has your Dad not had his licence assessed at all since his diagnosis? You are obviously worried about him so maybe you should get further advice from Parkinsobs helpline or maybe worth looking on the DVLA webpage? Good luck...I can understand how your Dad must feel as I know my husband would be devastated if he lost his licence and job......

#3

Hi

 

Please do not think I am being judgemental as it is a tough subject, no one wants to lose their licence or job..and I understand that.

But and heres the big but.....you say he was lost did not know where he was, could he possibly get disorientated drive the wrong way down a one way street,?  miss a red light, 

You say he has had scrapes ?   maybe your dad is worried too and does not know what to do, would it be best if you took the keys from him to safeguard him and others.

You say the nurse was made aware of this issue, this nurse is a professional and I believe it is her moral obligation at least or professional duty to report the concerns raised.

Your dad will take some time to recover from this loss of independance but if he killed or injured an innocent driver/passengers would he cope with the level of remorse, hurt in that scenario?  Please give this some thought as it seems your dad poses a risk  not only to himself, but other  road users and pedestrians. 

You could speak with the nurse so you have support and discuss this matter again.  Should someone notify dvla of their concerns the dvla will investigate this including the reason why your dad continued to drive when it was obvious he was unfit to do so. 

Good luck as this is a difficult for everyone involved, I think you may already know what you should do, be brave get support.  

 


#4
Hi Axmo, You must be so worried about your Dad. As the above posts say, as soon as you're diagnosed you have to inform the dvla. I've just received my 3 year licence. It can be taken out of your hands by stating to your Dad that it's down to the dvla. I agree also that the Pd nurse should make it clear to your Dad about the dangers of driving. I wish you well.

#5

There is only one answer, inform the DVLA before the worst happens.


#6

I'm new to forum but thought I'd let you know I was in same position with my father.  I sat down and said I didn't think his responses were quick enough for driving and his general movement of his body was not quick enough and that he had to think of other people and children, rather than just himself as he he didn't need to be travelling very fast in order to hurt or kill someone by driving.  At this point he said he thought he was okay and a safe driver.

I then rang the doctors to see if they could stop dad driving as I didn't want to be the one to stop him which is probably how you feel.  The doctor said they could not stop him but I asked if next time he had an appointment could they mention driving and discuss the need for him to think about the future and that sooner or later he would need to stop.  About a month following I took my dad for a routine checkup and the doctor did mention driving and said my dad needed to think about the deterioration in his mobility and he should consider giving up driving.  We got home and my dad said yes the doctor was right, it was time he didn't drive.  Success or so I thought but I later found out he did drive another two times but then did stop and I am now in the process of selling dad's car. 

I think sometimes it just take an outsider to put their view forward to help assist the sufferer to make the right decision.

I hope this helps x


#7

I actually don't live with him, and my mother cares for him, so I have no contact with his nurse. I've told my mother about the issues I mentioned, I instigated them talking to the nurse the first time, so I'm not sure what I can really do, as they're now so reluctant to do so again.

I slightly resent the accusations that I'm the one enabling him to drive dangerously, as I'm not his primary caregiver, but any advice in terms of having him / my mother come to terms with the fact he might need to accept he shouldn't be driving would be appreciated. 

The DVLA seem to renew licences with barely any check. 


#8

Axmo.

 

Your opening post states that you have been 'concerned for a few years' and in a later post that you are, concerned that he is 'not fit to drive.'

You can ask away on the forum but I think you already know what you should do. Heaven forbid that he has a serious accident which causes injury, or worse, to both him and an inocent  person.


#9
Hi Axmo, My parents have just gone through the same thing. My Dad is 87, his driving was good until his hands stiffened thru meds. (long story). He was seeing a specialist for something different and was told there and then to stop driving. My dad was actually relieved. My mother disappointed at loss of independence but understands. We as a family are relieved. Hopefully you can get someone outside the family to talk to your parents. It's never cut and dried or easy but it has to be done.

#10

Hi Aximo

Please do not feel attacked or blamed.  People are concerned and have taken the trouble to reply to you.  The main concern is the risk of injury or death to either your dad or someone else, I am worried you would not forgive yourself in this event. Your dad may have lost his reasoning skills as Parkinsons can impact on cognitive functioning. This has been going on for a few years now, time for someone to contact DVLA report a change in his driving ability, chat to someone at dvla maybe they can request an up to date report from his doctor and this can then be discussed with your dad resulting in your dads licence being revoked.  It sounds to me like your mum has her hands full as your dads main carer, help her by sorting this out.

Best wishes