South Shields driver banned for 30 months after toppling sign in bizarre 10mph crash

A slow-driving offshore worker has been hit with a 30-month roads’ ban after leaving the highway in his car and hitting a signpost - at 10mph.

Thursday, 10th June 2021, 4:55 am
The incident happened in Horsley Hill Road

Gavin Brennan, 49, was tailed by bemused police as his motor crawled along the 30mph Horsley Hill Road in South Shields.

Brennan, of West Avenue, near Harton, South Shields, mounted the curb and collided with the sign, a court heard.

Despite his lack of speed during the incident at 11pm on Friday, February 19, the force of the collision knocked the sign completely over.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

He gave a roadside breath test reading almost three times the limit but refused to provide two further samples at a police station, as required by law.

The rig foreman has now been handed the lengthy disqualification and fined a hefty £1,166 after pleading guilty to failing to provide a sample for analysis.

Prosecutor Leanne Duffy told magistrates in South Tyneside: “Officers were heading south on Horsley Hill Road.

“They saw a vehicle being driven in front of them at 10mph.

“It gently moved left towards the curb, which it mounted, and collided with a roadside sign.

“Although moving slowly, the force was such that the sign was knocked flat.

“The officers could smell alcohol from inside the vehicle. When asked if he had been drinking, the defendant didn’t reply.”

Ms Duffy added: “He was taken to hospital, and then to a police station for a CAMIC test but was resistant. It’s a deliberate refusal.”

The court heard Brennan’s roadside test showed 91mcgs of alcohol in 100mls of breath. The legal limit is 35mcgs.

He has two previous convictions from two offences but has nothing similar on his record, it was said.

David Forrester, defending, said Brennan had been hard hit by the pandemic lockdown, including temporarily losing employment.

He said: “He does refer, at the roadside, that he’s struggling significantly with his mental health. It’s mental health trauma.

“He’s given a sample at the roadside, there’s no logic to doing that and then not at the police station.”

Brennan must also pay a £117 victim surcharge and £85 court costs.

Support your Gazette and become a subscriber today. Enjoy unlimited access to local news, the latest football stories and new puzzles every day. With a digital subscription, you can see fewer ads, enjoy faster load times, and get access to exclusive newsletters and content. Click here to subscribe.