Over the limit bus driver ‘started car to keep warm’


A Nelson bus driver faces losing his job after starting his car to keep warm.

Blackburn magistrates heard Darren John Holgate had been drinking at a friend’s home when an argument started and he was told to leave.

But he was breathalysed after police found him sitting in his car with the engine running.

Holgate (33), of Avondale Road, pleaded guilty to being in charge of a vehicle while unfit through drink. He was fined £165 with £105 costs and his licence endorsed with 10 penalty points. He was banned for six months under the totting up rules.

Mr Damian Pickup (defending) said Holgate had driven to Rishton to have a few drinks with a friend intending to stay over.

“There was a drunken argument and his friend threw him out and said he couldn’t stay,” said Mr Pickup.

He said Holgate went to his car which was parked in the street and had been sitting in it for about 20 minutes when the police arrived.

“It was a cold night and he was running the engine to keep warm,” said Mr Pickup.

“Clearly he will not be able to work as a bus driver but if he gets a six months totting disqualification he may be able to persuade his boss to keep him on in some capacity until he gets his licence back.”