Jul 15 2011 by Lisa Boyle, Ayrshire Post (main ed)
A ROOKIE driver who crashed into a lamp post while he was three times the drink drive limit has narrowly avoided a jail term.
Stuart Fergusson, 17, was seen getting into his car and speeding off by a taxi driver who had just dropped him off at his home in Ayr’s Morton Road.
The concerned man quickly phoned police and tried to follow Fergusson.
But because of the high speed Fergusson was driving at, the taxi driver lost him in the Belmont Avenue and Dalmellington Road area.
Moments later however, Fergusson lost control of the car, careered across the carriage, onto the pavement and into a lamp post.
Worried members of the public rushed to Fergusson’s assistance to see if he was ok, but they quickly realised he was drunk and they also phoned police.
When police arrived, the car was half on the road, half on the pavement.
Fergusson immediately admitted that he was the driver and underwent a breath test.
He was found to be three times the legal limit.
At Ayr Sheriff Court this week, he pleaded guilty to drink driving on May 19 this year.
His defence lawyer told Sheriff Jack McGowan said: “He comes from a law abiding family who are angered by his actions.
“He lives with his grandparents and he’s disappointed them but has undertaken to pay them back the cost of the car.”
Sheriff McGowan said: “He was three times the limit and wraps his car around a lamp post.
“What I’m considering is whether or not to send him to jail. That’s how serious this is.”
But the lawyer added: “I don’t think he’s someone you’ll see in court again.”
Ordering him to carry out 200 hours of community service and banning him for three years, Sheriff McGowan explained: “Having considered this case very carefully, I’ve come to the conclusion – by the narrowest margin – that I don’t need to send you to custody.
“It’s a matter of good fortune that nobody was in your way. The consequences could have been horrendous.
“You better vow never to darken the door of this court again.”