Drink-driver hit pole feet from pedestrian who pulled him from vehicle

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY

South East Suffolk Magistrates' Court. Picture: ARCHANT LIBRARY - Credit: Gregg Brown

A drink-driver who almost collided with a pedestrian while more than twice the alcohol limit has been banned from the road.

Tristan Briggs’ system also contained the metabolite of cocaine when he crashed into a pole – about 12ft from a pedestrian – in Bumpstead Road, Haverhill.

The 29-year-old’s Vauxhall Corsa was badly damaged in the crash, which happened between 8pm and 9pm on September 10, after Briggs had been drinking at two pubs.

Briggs, who lives in the same road, admitted drink and drug-driving at South East Suffolk Magistrates’ Court, in Ipswich, on Monday.

Prosecutor Lesla Small said the pedestrian turned after hearing the sound of skidding and revving, to see Briggs’ car collide with a post he had just passed.

The car “bounced” off the pole and into a bush on the other side of the road, which was strewn with debris, including the vehicle’s bumper and exhaust.

As the pedestrian pulled Briggs from the car, he immediately realised he was drunk and called police. When officers arrived and helped him to a waiting ambulance, he told them: “I usually drink-drive, but never this bad.”

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Briggs had consumed one pint in a Ridgewell pub before drinking another two pints at a pub in Haverhill.

Tests found his blood contained 191 micrograms of cocaine metabolite benzoylecgonine and 177 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres – the legal limits being 50 and 80.

Mark Holt, representing Briggs, asked magistrates to ignore his client’s comments to police about drink-driving.

“He had been involved in a significant accident and I can’t imagine he was in a fit state to know what he was doing,” he added.

“Fortunately, no one else was injured.

“He clearly shouldn’t have been drinking in the quantity he did.”

Mr Holt said Briggs had approached alcoholism treatment providers but, by his own admission, had not fully engaged with the programme.

“He may, instead, benefit from some compulsion to engage,” he concluded.

Briggs, a storeman and driver for a Haverhill warehouse, was disqualified for 22 months, ordered to carry out 60 hours of unpaid work and attend 20 days of rehabilitation, and told to pay court costs.