Driver caught behind wheel after "seven or eight pints and four or five G&Ts" in Colne

The defendant has a previous conviction for excess alcohol.
The defendant has a previous conviction for excess alcohol.
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A drink-driver almost twice the limit left his number plate after crashing his works van in Colne, a court heard.

Burnley magistrates were told how audio visual engineer Joseph West was seen by two witnesses to set off with a flat tyre and a headlight out after the early hours incident. He was found in the driver's seat of the vehicle further up the road, stuck in a ditch, with the hazard lights flashing and air bag deployed.

He told the police: "I have been out in Colne. I have had a drink. I know the script."

The 32-year-old defendant, who has a previous conviction for excess alcohol, blew 68 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35. West told police he did not remember a lot about the evening. He said he had gone out in the afteCOlnernoon and had seven or eight pints and four or five gin and tonics.

Mr Trevor Grice, defending, said West had not set out to deliberately drink and drive. The solicitor continued: "He had arranged to go and play snooker with ex-colleagues, at a snooker hall. They then suggested they should go on for a drink and it's clearly got out of hand."

Mr Grice said the defendant worked all over the country. He added: "The fact he has pleaded guilty today means inevitably that he will lose his employment."

West, of Marsh Lane, Oxenhope in Keighley, admitted driving with excess alcohol on Lancashire Moor Road in Trawden and failing to stop after an accident on School Lane in Laneshawbridge when damage was caused to a stone boundary wall on June 3rd.

He was fined £200 with £85 costs and a £30 victim surcharge. The defendant was banned for 17 months.