Pensioner drank, drove and crashed

Thursday 11th August 2022 3:31 pm
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Exterior view of the Isle of Man Courthouse in Douglas - (Isle of Man Newspapers )

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A 69-year-old drink-driver who crashed into another car has been fined £1,000 and banned from driving for two years.

Robert Fraser Corlett was nearly twice the legal limit when his silver Mercedes SL350 hit an Audi A3 at Queen’s Promenade in Ramsey.

Magistrates also ordered the pensioner to take an extended driving test at the end of his ban and to pay £125 prosecution costs.

Prosecuting advocate Roger Kane told the court that Corlett, who lives at Clenagh Road in Sulby, was driving on Queen’s Promenade on April 2, heading towards Dale Street.

As he turned left, he crossed the centre white line and hit a red Audi A3 which was coming the other way.

When police arrived, they described Corlett as slurring his words and unsteady on his feet.

He failed a roadside breathalyser test and was subsequently arrested and taken to police headquarters.

Once there, a blood sample was taken which later produced a reading of 150. The legal limit is 80.

During a police interview, Corlett said that he had consumed a glass of bourbon, containing around three measures, before driving.

He said that he did not feel that he would be over the limit and added that health issues may have contributed to him appearing unsteady.

Corlett said that he could not recall what happened in relation to the collision.

Mr Kane said that insurers were dealing with any damage payments.

Defence advocate David Clegg said that it was a particularly sad matter as his client had reached the age of 69 without ever being arrested.

‘He was a little under double the limit and understands he will be facing a disqualification,’ said the advocate.

‘He has no immediate plans to retake his test.

‘Mr Corlett is not somebody who has embraced a callous disregard for the law. This is someone who has made a genuine mistake.

‘It seems he was going quite slowly at the time of the collision.’

Mr Clegg said that his client was currently receiving old age pension and asked for the offence to be dealt with via a financial penalty.

Magistrates’ chair David Christian told Corlett: ‘Quite clearly you believed you would have been under the limit but clearly you weren’t.

‘Unfortunately, at the age of 69 you have lost your good character.

‘We’re having too many people come before the court for drink-driving.’

Corlett will pay the fine and costs at a rate of £200 per month.

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