A MOTHER has warned teenagers against vehicle ‘surfing’ after her son died after falling off the back of a van driven by his older brother.
Scott Blackburn’s head hit the road near his family home and he died within minutes from the skull injury - in what is thought to be the first death of its kind in South Yorkshire.
His distraught brother Damien said he had no idea the 15-year-old had been hitching a ride on the rear bumper until he saw him lying in the road.
Damien, 18 at the time, did not have a licence when he took his father’s truck, but will not face charges after prosecutors decided it was not in the public interest.
After Tuesday’s inquest into Scott’s death 21 months ago, mum Andrea Blackburn, 42, said she does not blame Damien, now 20.
School dinner lady Andrea, said: “I would say to any other teenagers not to do this sort of thing, definitely not.
“Scott was just a big joker who loved life. That was the daring type of child he was.
“We’d had a fantastic day that Sunday because I’d just talked him into staying on at school for the sixth form.
“Had I not been on the computer I would have walked behind the van as Damien got it off the drive to park it on the road, and Scott would have walked at the side, and that is the guilt I hold, because he would have been here now.”
The inquest heard Damien had driven the van from the family home in Welfare Road, Woodlands, to Third Avenue to turn it round, remaining in first gear.
He did not know 20-stone Scott, had climbed onto the bumper and was hanging from the back until he lost his grip..
The family had just returned from a motocross biking event at Finningley and had unloaded their bikes to clean the van.
Coroner Nicola Mundy recorded a verdict of accidental death, saying it was clear Scott had jumped on the back of the van without Damien knowing and that he could not be seen in rear view mirrors.
She said: “It is my view he lost his grip and couldn’t hold on any longer and fell to the ground and sustained a head injury,”