Drunken high-speed driver put off road for five years in Listowel

A Listowel man was put off the road for five years after he led gardaí on a high-speed chase while returning to his home town from Tralee in January in which he drove into the path of oncoming traffic and hit the kerb of Listowel Bridge.

William O'Driscoll, 28 Feale Drive, Listowel pleaded guilty to dangerous driving and drunken driving at Listowel District Court on Thursday.

Sgt Kieran O'Connell said gardaí observed Mr O'Driscoll driving at excessive speed at the Six Crosses outside the town, before following him into Tanavalla where they 'observed the car driving at speed over the white lines'.

The car later swerved into the path of oncoming traffic and hit the kerb while crossing Listowel Bridge before stopping on the Listowel side of the bridge. A breath test of the defendant returned a reading of 84mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath.

Solicitor Karen Carmody said Mr O'Driscoll had not intended drinking on the day: "He was in Tralee that day, he had not gone there with the intention of drinking but he met some friends...he had no money left for a taxi and then made the decision to drive home."

The Court heard that Mr O'Driscoll, a 'shift-worker' in Abbeyfeale required a postponement period in order to make arrangements for altnernative transport to work.

Judge David Waters fined Mr O'Driscoll €300 and put him off the road for three years for drunken driving; and fined him €200 with a two-year disqualificantion for dangerous driving.