Flawed drinking logic leads to Wigan man's driving ban

Wigan and Leigh Magistrates Court
Wigan and Leigh Magistrates Court
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A Wiganer who wrongly thought he was safe to get behind the wheel despite spending hours out drinking has been banned from the road.

Matthew Rush, of St Paul’s Avenue, Goose Green, pleaded guilty to drink-driving when he appeared in the dock at Wigan and Leigh Magistrates’ Court.

The bench heard that the 32-year-old thought that having soft drinks between the alcohol he was consuming over the course of an evening would be enough to keep him within the law. But it proved to be a foolhardy calculation.

The hearing was told Rush was seen on CCTV getting into a Daewoo parked around the back of the Reflex club, in Wigan town centre, at about 11pm on May 28.

This immediately attracted the operator’s attention as Rush had been glimpsed for several hours previously out and about in bars.

Police, alerted by the operator, stopped the vehicle on nearby Millgate and the officers could smell alcohol on his breath, with a sample revealing he was over the limit.

Tests at the police station eventually produced a reading of 48 microgrammes per 100 millilitres of breath, compared to the legal level of 35mg.

Nicola Yeadon, prosecuting, said Rush admitted to officers at the scene that he had drunk around four pints.

Martin Jones defending, said Rush had tried to stay on the right side of the law and got his sums disastrously awry.

Mr Jones said: “My client has applied a logic to his consumption of alcohol.

“Unfortunately, that logic appears to have been deeply flawed.

“He thought that by drinking over a lengthy period and interspersing beer with soft drinks and water he would stay within the legal limit for driving.

“You will notice no suggestion the vehicle was driven in a way to cause alarm to road users or the police.

“CCTV followed him from licensed premises to his car and that provoked the attention of the police.”

Mr Jones also said Rush’s reading was comparatively low and an inevitable disqualification from driving would not affect his job as a customer services manager.

The bench banned Rush from driving for 14 months, though his ban will be reduced by 25 per cent if he completes a drink-drive rehabilitation course.

He was also ordered to pay a £253 fine, £85 in court costs and a £30 victim’s surcharge.