Five times over limit when breath-tested

Roadside breathalyser testing - library image
Roadside breathalyser testing - library image

A drunk driver - with two previous convictions for the offence - pulled over and parked up when it dawned on him he was not fit to drive.

Unfortunately for Lawrence O’Hara (56) his erratic driving had been noted by another motorist who reported him to the police.

When he was tested by officers O’Hara, who was jailed in 2004 for drink driving, was found to be almost five times over the legal limit.

Appearing at Falkirk Sheriff Court last Thursday, O’Hara had previously pleaded guilty to drink-driving on the A803 Edinburgh-Glasgow road near Haining Road, Falkirk, on March 8.

He gave a reading of 104 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, when the legal limit is 22 microgrammes.

Graham McLachlan, procurator fiscal depute, said: “It was 1.20am when the witness noticed the car being driven on the M80 northbound. The witness attempted to overtake the car but abandoned the manoeuvre due to the car in front swerving over the lanes.

“The witness called the police and continued to follow the car. The vehicle eventually stopped in a lay-by and police attended.

“They spoke to the accused and could tell he was under the influence of alcohol.”

O’Hara’s first drink driving conviction was in 1990 and he was jailed for a similar offence 11 years ago.

His defence agent said: “He did commit the offence but some sort of sense prevailed when he realised he was not doing too well.”

It was stated O’Hara, who claimed to have now stopped drinking alcohol, had got rid of his car and had not driven a motor vehicle since the offence.

Sheriff John Mundy said: “It’s very often the case for people in your situation, that jail will follow.

‘‘You will not receive a custodial sentence and should regard yourself as being very fortunate.”

Sheriff Mundy banned O’Hara, of 46 Wotherspoon drive, Bo’ness, from driving for eight years and fined him £600 to be paid off at £30 per week. He was also placed on a supervised community payback order for 18 months with the condition he complete 200 hours of unpaid work in the community within nine months.