Sunderland drink-driver was almost four times the limit when seen swerving across the road

A Sunderland drink-driver has been banned after he was seen swerving across a residential road at almost four times the limit.

Friday, 12th November 2021, 11:47 am

Stewart Pringle, 48, was found at the wheel of his Fiat Punto in Cullercoats Road, Hylton Castle, at 3.25am on Wednesday, September 15.

Pringle, of Baltimore Avenue, Town End Farm, was pulled over by police who also saw him driving so slowly as to arouse their suspicions.

A breath test showed 132mcg of alcohol in 100mls of breath. The legal limit is 35mcg.

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The case was heard at South Tyneside Magistrates Court.

Prosecutor Leanne Duffy told the hearing: “Officers were on duty when their attention was drawn to a Fiat Punto travelling on Cullercoats Road.

“It was seen to be swerving across the carriageway at a low speed. They caused the driver to stop and spoke to him.

“His smelled strongly of alcohol and his eyes were glazed and a roadside breath test was failed.

“He was taken into custody. A CAMIC breath test gave a lowest reading of 132mcg.”

Pringle, who has two previous convictions, pleaded guilty to drink-driving.

Rebecca Highton, defending, said: “He has been abstinent for eight weeks, he has reduced his alcohol safely.

“The imposition of a custodial sentence would have a significant impact on him, it could lead him to relapse into alcohol.”

Magistrates banned Pringle from driving for 32 months and sentenced him to a 12-month community order.

The order carries a requirement of 20 days of rehabilitation work and four months of alcohol treatment.

He was also made subject to a three-month, 7pm to 7am electronically monitored curfew and must pay a £95 victim surcharge and £85 court costs.