Family's motorway road rage terror

A drunken motorist frightened other innocent road users on the busy M6 near Wigan during a terrifying road rage incident, a court heard.

Saturday, 3rd September 2016, 3:00 pm

Prescot Garom’s appalling driving centred around a Wigan couple travelling back from the Lake District with their two young children around teatime on September 26 last year.

Jailing him for 12 months Judge Andrew Menary, QC described his driving as “road rage” involving attempting to bully a woman driver and he banned him from the road for three and a half years.

Garom, 33, was travelling at 70mph while three and a half times over the drink-driving limit and Liverpool Crown Court heard it was his second conviction for driving with excess alcohol.

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Claire Jones, prosecuting, said that while the Dowthwaite family were in the outside lane behind an Audi TT Mrs Alex Dowthwaite, who was driving, saw Garom’s red Peugeot moving in and out of lanes, undertaking and suddenly pulling out.

“People were seen to have to brake heavily because of his weaving in and out,” said Claire Jones, prosecuting.

He pulled out of the middle lane in front of the Audi which had to brake as did Mrs Dowthwaite. The Audi managed to speed off and Mrs Dowthwaite had to slam on her brakes to avoid a collision with Garom’s car which manoeuvred in an aggressive manner.

“She was so concerned about his actions that she asked her husband to call the police,” said Miss Jones.

“Garom moved back into the middle lane and she tried to pass and her husband made a gesture to the defendant to describe his driving and Garom made a gun gesture in response.”

His dangerous driving continued with him flashing his lights at them from behind and then cutting in front and was straddling two lanes weaving about so she could not get past him.

He slowed down to 35mph and began throwing items from his window including a cigarette packet and a coffee cup. He refused to move over and a queue of traffic built up behind.

Eventually he moved over and sped off but meanwhile another driver had also telephoned the police about his “erratic aggressive” driving. Mrs Dowthwaite later described how she had been scared for the safety of herself and her family.

About 6pm police spotted the car on the junction 24 sliproad at Ashton and when they spoke to the passengers they said they had run out of fuel and Garom had got a taxi to take him to get some. Garom returned while the officers were there and they could smell alcohol and he was arrested.

He was un-cooperative and had to be CS gas sprayed and handcuffed. When breathalysed at a police station he was found to have 122 micrograms of alcohol in 100ml of breath, said Miss Jones.

Garom, of Hall Street, Ashton-on-Ribble, Preston, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, driving with excess alcohol and without a driving licence.

Rebecca Smith, defending, said that Garom had suffered the tragic loss of his son and has used alcohol as a crutch. “He knows having spent time incarcerated that he cannot drink because when he does he gets himself into difficulties. It was a bad piece of driving and he wishes to apologise and will take any assistance offered in prison.”