Young drivers 'need more alcohol education', judge says

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Young drivers need more education about how long it takes the body to process alcohol, a district judge has said.

Barney McElholm made the comment when sentencing a driver who was caught when almost three times the legal limit.

Dervela Gallagher, 24, was stopped by police on 2 December in a so-called "morning after" case.

Londonderry Magistrates Court heard she had had her last drink five hours before being pulled over.

Three times the legal limit

The judge said there should be more education for young motorists in terms of the effects of alcohol.

A prosecution solicitor said the defendant was seen by members of a police mobile patrol driving at 0700 GMT on 2 December driving along Culmore Road in Derry without her car lights switched on.

The police car pulled alongside the defendant's car and officers indicated to her to switch on her lights, the court was told.

When she failed to do so the officers indicated to her to pull over.

As she did so her car meandered in and out of a cycling lane and her front tyre struck the kerb, the solicitor added.

The court heard that when breathalysed, the defendant was found to be almost three times the legal limit.

A solicitor for the defence told the court the defendant, who was driving to the gym, had had her last drink five hours earlier.

She was fined £100 and disqualified for a year.

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