Drunk driver turned onto railway track and got stuck ‘lucky to be here’

News from the courts
News from the courts

A Sleaford area woman driver who was so drunk she ‘completely lost her bearings’ and turned onto the railway track at the Sleaford level crossing and got stuck on the rails, has been told she was ‘lucky to be here’.

Shaunna Macpherson, 22, of Westcliffe Road, Ruskington, admitted driving with excess alcohol and to causing an obstruction on the railway, when she appeared before District Judge Peter Veits sitting at Boston Magistrates Court yesterday (Wednesday).

Prosecuting, Shelley Wilson said British Transport Police were told at 2.45am on August 11 that a lady driver had driven onto the railway line and when they attended they found her Citroen C3 car stuck five to ten metres along the track from the level crossing at Bonemill Lane, Sleaford.

She said Macpherson was at the scene and was ‘hysterical and incoherent’ and clearly under the influence of alcohol.

Ms Wilson said Macpherson refused to give a breath test at the scene but did comply with the procedures at the police station where she gave a reading of 78 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath, more than twice the legal limit of 35.

She said Macpherson told officers she could not remember how much she had drunk that evening, but did claim she had been assaulted and ejected from the pub.

She said witnesses said Macpherson had driven once over the crossing, then turned round and driven back onto it and turned left onto the track and got stuck.

Mitigating, Roger Lowther said she had been having difficulties at home so had gone out with her former partner and there had been an altercation between him and someone else as a result of which she had been assaulted and was then ejected from the pub.

He said she decided to drive home to Ruskington and on the way completely lost her bearings and was in a complete state of panic and hysterical.

He added she had never been in trouble before.

Banning her from driving for two years, Judge Veits told her she was ‘lucky to be here’.

“A train and a C3, there’s only one winner,” he said. “The only reason you’re here is because you had too much to drink’.

She was offered the drink drivers’ rehabilitation course, which will reduce the period of the ban by six months, and was fined £250 plus £115 in costs and charges.