Driving or Attempting to Drive Whilst Unfit Through Drink or Drugs

This offence is dealt with in the Magistrates Court.

A person is taken to be unfit to drive if his ability to drive properly is for the time being impaired. It need not be proved that the defendant was incapable of driving.

The court may take note of such evidence as, for example, where there is evidence of drink or drugs:

  • driving erratically,
  • colliding with a stationary object for no apparent reason,
  • the defendant's condition (slurred speech, staggering, mental confusion).

If convicted the maximum penanlty is:

  • £5000 fine and/or
  • 6 months imprisonment.

The Court must disqualify for at least one year unless there are any special reasons.

The offender may also be ordered to pass a driving test.

In addition the Court must endorse the licence with between 3-11 penalty points unless special reasons exist.

Note that if there are any previous convictions during the ten years preceding the current offence, the compulsory disqualification period must be for at least three years unless special reasons exist.

A previous conviction for driving (or attempting to drive) a motor vehicle with alcohol over the prescribed limit or a previous conviction for refusing a blood etc specimen in such circumstances counts as a previous conviction for this offence.

McKenzies Solicitors, are experts in motoring law. We have a dedicated team who have over 60 years of combined experience in dealing with such matters. To discuss your case in more detail with a specialist soliictor please call or email using the form below.

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