A DRINK-driver was caught on the A66 at Kirkby Thore after a concerned motorist reported seeing him driving “erratically.”

Derek McCormack, 44, was just under twice the legal limit for driving when police caught up with him on June 3, Carlisle's Rickergate court heard. He admitted the offence.

Prosecutor Jackie Partington described the offence. At the time, the defendant was at the wheel of a Toyota Hilux. 

“Police were contacted by a member of the public who was driving behind Mr McCormack, whose driving was described as erratic,” explained the lawyer.

“Mr McCormack admitted to the police that he had been drinking and had consumed several cans of beer. The officers noticed several empty cans in the front of the vehicle.”

A roadside breath test produced a positive result for alcohol. A later test confirmed that the defendant had 61mcgt of alcohol in every 100mls of breath. The legal limit for driving is 35mcg.

The court heard that the defendant, of Chester Mews, Sunderland, was convicted of drink driving in 2013.

Tariq Khawam, for McCormack, said the defendant had discovered that somebody had shared private medical information about him with other people and this revelation had a significant impact on him.

Following his earlier drink driving conviction, the defendant had ceased drinking but discovering that his medical information had been shared heightened his anxiety and depression.

“When he suffers in that way, he turns to drink in an effort to get over what had happened,” said Mr Khawam. When caught by the police, the defendant had willingly cooperated.

A self-employed carpenter, who had children, the inevitable ban would have a big effect on the defendant. “He wishes to apologise,” added Mr Khawam.

Magistrates imposed a 17 month ban along with a £269 fine, a £108 victim surcharge and £85 costs.

The defendant was offered the drink driver rehabilitation course which if completed by a deadline will reduce his disqualification.