Tyne Tunnel blue light fake ambulance driver fined
A man who fitted his car with blue lights and a siren to make it look like an ambulance before driving erratically on the roads has been fined.
Shaun Scandle was spotted by staff at the Tyne Tunnel as he drove through rush hour traffic.
The 31-year-old, of Priestpopple, Hexham, pleaded guilty at North Shields Magistrates' Court, to driving carelessly on 9 September.
He was fined £1,000 and given nine points on his licence.
Tyne Tunnel staff alerted police after Scandle drove through the barrier and then put sirens on at the tunnel - something even police are not allowed to do - before weaving in between other vehicles.
Officers made inquiries with the North East Ambulance Service, which said it had no record of one of their vehicles being in the area at the time.
Scandle, who runs a business offering first aid at events across the North East, was summonsed for some offences relating to fitting his vehicle with the light and sirens, but these were dropped and brought under the offence of careless driving.
Following the hearing, he was ordered to destroy the equipment.
Sgt Alan Keenleyside, of Northumbria Police, said: "This may seem like a bizarre story but the reality is Scandle was putting lives at risk through his behaviour on the road.
"Those working in the emergency services receive specialist training to drive our response vehicles and the public should not try and take that responsibility into their own hands."