Friday 24 November 2017

Three-times-over-limit Captain jailed for Belfast Lough ferry crash

Miroslaw Pozniak, the captain of a ship which collided with a passenger ferry causing thousands of pounds worth of damage who had drunk up to seven bottles of beer, a court heard today. Photo: PA
Miroslaw Pozniak, the captain of a ship which collided with a passenger ferry causing thousands of pounds worth of damage who had drunk up to seven bottles of beer, a court heard today. Photo: PA

Michael McHugh

THE drunk captain of a ship which collided with a passenger ferry in Northern Ireland, causing more than £1 million of damage, has been jailed for a year.



Miroslaw Pozniak, 55, admitted crashing his cargo boat while three times over the alcohol limit but said it was because of news of his wife's ill-health, his defence barrister told Downpatrick Crown Court.



The married father-of-two was at the helm on March 7 when he crashed into a ferry with 100 passengers and crew on board in Belfast Lough after ignoring warnings from coastguards. He had no look-out despite the darkness.



Judge David Smyth QC told Pozniak: "This sentence is to make it clear that the following of the regulations in relation to alcohol and also in relation to the charting and proper adherence to accepted routes is of vital importance.



"The ending of your 30-year career and the sentence effectively demonstrate that."



The defendant dropped his head slightly as sentence was passed.

Press Association

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