Drunk truckie five times the limit

By DARRYN NUFER

A TRUCK driver blew more than five times the regular blood alcohol limit after being intercepted by police in Rockhampton.

"And he was behind the wheel of a semi-trailer, oh my God,'' Rockhampton Magistrate Bronwyn Springer said yesterday after hearing 39-year-old Michael Joseph Marr's reading of .268%.

The blood alcohol limit for heavy vehicle drivers is zero. The court heard Marr had been on "a bender'' for a couple of days when police stopped him on Gladstone Road in Rockhampton, about 12.20pm on August 22.

The bender was due to the tempestuous state of Marr's relationship with his wife, his solicitor said. Marr, a former truckie of eight years, yesterday pleaded guilty to driving under the influence.

Marr's solicitor said his client had driven after returning to the vehicle, which he had left on the side of the road. His intention had been "to move it 500 metres up the road to sleep in''.

Magistrate Springer fined Marr $800 for the offence and disqualified him from driving for 16 months. She ordered he complete a drink-driving program and placed him on 12 months probation.

"The only mitigating factor is that you weren't careering down the highway and the fact you're no longer in the trucking game, and I hope you're not in it for a long time,'' Magistrate Springer said.

"I seriously hope I don't see you back (before the court). "I'd be very easily persuaded to send you to prison with your history.''

Regional Traffic Co-ordinator Inspector Lyle Mitchell said it was of great concern the degree of impairment such a reading would give a driver.

"The potential for an accident would be very high. "I'm very happy he was intercepted before anything like that occurred.



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