Motorist who crashed on South Tyneside road was smallest possible amount over drink-drive limit

A motorist who crashed on a South Tyneside road was the smallest possible amount over the drink-drive limit, a court heard.

By Gareth Crickmer
Friday, 20th May 2022, 2:58 pm

Ashley Southall, 23, was just 1mg above the legal level when breathalysed after the smash in Front Street, Whitburn.

Southall gave a reading for alcohol in 100ml of blood of 81mg, against a legal limit of 80mg, on Tuesday, September 28 last year.

However, District Judge Paul Currer expressed little sympathy. Banning Southall from driving for a year at South Tyneside Magistrates’ Court, Judge Currer told him: “It’s serious because you were unfit to drive.

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South Tyneside Magistrates Court.

“You were just over the limit but no doubt the alcohol affected your ability to drive safely.”

Prosecutor Clare Irving said: “This gentleman was involved in a single vehicle road traffic accident at about 8.40pm.

“He had been travelling at speed and collided with a stone wall of a dwelling. The vehicle came to rest sideways on the carriageway.

“He was taken to hospital and bloods were taken, which came back as 81mg. It is 1mg over the limit.”

Southall, who has no previous convictions, pleaded guilty to drink-driving.

Charlton Carr, defending, yold the court: “It’s very prescriptive, the guidelines in regard of this matter. It is aggravated by a single vehicle crash.”

Southall, of Chesters Avenue, Longbenton, Newcastle, was also fined £120, with £85 court costs and a £34 victim surcharge.

Judge Currer also offered him a place on a drink-drive rehabilitation course, the completion of which reduces a ban by a quarter.