A man who got into his car while more than two times the drink drive limit after being told he needed to get to the hospital as his mother had just “hours to live” is banned from driving for 12 months.
The motorist concerned, who had been drinking, got into his car to head up to the hospital but was caught speeding by police and pulled over on Earlham Road, Norwich, where he also failed a preliminary roadside breath test. He was found to have 82 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35.
The individual, admitted the offence of drink driving on 17 December last year when he first appeared at Norwich Magistrates Court but had his case adjourned until yesterday for a ‘special reasons’ hearing to determine whether or not he should be disqualified from driving.
At the hearing, the individual gave evidence and said he visited his mother at hospital on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays but had been at home drinking on the day he received the telephone call from his brother as it was not his day to visit her.
He told the court he was “devastated” by the call and had “wanted to try and see her before she died” but had no money for a taxi, did not think he would be able to get public transport, was not able to get a lift from his daughter as she was working and did not think his neighbour would be able to take him. Unfortunately, his mother passed away before he had the opportunity to see her.
The District Judge sitting at Norwich Magistrates Court said he acknowledged the defendant had been in “crisis” and was just thinking of getting to the hospital to see his mum, but had to also take into account the level of alcohol in his system and insisted he could have done more so could not find this to be a ‘special reason’ case.
The individual was fined £100, ordered to pay £85 costs, a £20 surcharge and banned from driving for the minimum mandatory period for such an offence, which is 12 months.