Dad nearly hit by lorry after he ran drunk onto motorway

Heavy snow on the N4 in Lucan, Dublin this morning. Photo: Collins

Andrew Phelan

A DRUNKEN man narrowly avoided being hit by an articulated lorry when he ran across six lanes of motorway traffic in a "bewildered" state, looking for a bus stop, a court heard.

Bwalya Chanda (28) ran in front of a patrol car, then ran back across the motorway at night time when gardai tried to catch him.

The married father-of-one had been out drinking, was unfamiliar with the area and thought he could find a bus.

Chanda, of Nephin Road, Cabra, pleaded guilty to two counts of being drunk and a danger to himself and traffic at the N4, Lucan on May 9.

He also admitted a related charge of public intoxication.

Judge David McHugh told him "anything could have happened" in the incident, but struck the charges out after he paid €200 to charity.

Sgt Mary Doherty told Blanchardstown District Court gardai were on patrol at 10.45pm when they saw the accused run across the road in front of them, narrowly missing another vehicle.

They pursued him in a 700-metre foot chase, after which he ran back across six lanes of traffic to the other side, narrowly avoiding being struck by an articulated lorry.

"It was a deadly move," Judge McHugh told defence solicitor Fiona Brennan. "Anything could have happened, it was very serious."

Ms Brennan explained that Chanda was "not a man who drinks" but he had been out on the night and was not familiar with the area.

"He got it into his head that he might be able to get a bus if he got across to the other side of the road," Ms Brennan said.

In his native Zambia, it was "not advantageous" to have a meeting with the police and he was "confused and bewildered and didn't know why the gardai were there".

"Nobody is more aware than he is how lucky he was," Ms Brennan added.