Monday 16 July 2018

'Drunk driver' slams car into wall after trying to avoid checkpoint

'It all happened out of the blue' - says eyewitness

Conor Feehan

Conor Feehan

A suspected drunk driver who tried to avoid a garda checkpoint was caught and arrested after he crashed into a garden wall.

The man, aged in his mid-30s, tried to evade the random checkpoint in west Dublin in the early hours of yesterday morning but ended up drawing attention to himself when his hopes to drive away undetected backfired.

In his haste to perform a U-turn, while the vehicles in front of his were being inspected, he crashed into a wall.

The incident happened on the Ongar Road near Hartstown at 1am yesterday, at a garda checkpoint set up to check drivers for tax and insurance and to conduct breath tests for alcohol.

The driver narrowly missed another car when he lost control and crashed into a brick wall beside the road.

An eyewitness described the scene to the Herald.

“He just missed the car I was in and slammed into the wall. If he thought he was going to sneak away, it certainly went wrong for him.

“The gardai were up with him in seconds and arrested him,” he said.

“He just missed us with the car. It was very close.

“We didn’t know why he was trying to get away but the gardai had it all under control,” he added.

“It was on the Ongar Road at the Willow Wood estate. It all happened out of the blue.

“It was the last thing you would expect.”

Gardai yesterday confirmed a man in his mid-30s was arrested at the scene and taken to a garda station where he was tested for his alcohol levels.

He was later released but is due to face court over the incident in the future.

Gardai routinely follow motorists who are thought to be trying to evade checkpoints, to check their details and to conduct breath tests, if required, after pulling them over.

Last year more than 327,000 breath tests were carried out on drivers on Irish roads, compared to more than 397,000 in 2014.

There were also more than 77,000 Mandatory Alcohol Testing (MAT) checkpoints conducted countrywide last year, down from 78,000 in 2014.


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