Drunk driver crashed into parked car when trying to pick up friend

Nicola Woolnough pleaded guilty at Suffolk Magistrates' Court Picture: GREGG BROWN

Nicola Woolnough pleaded guilty at Suffolk Magistrates' Court Picture: GREGG BROWN

A drunk driver crashed into a parked car after getting behind the wheel in an attempt to pick up a friend.

Magistrates in Ipswich heard that Nicola Woolnough, 50, was more than twice the legal limit when she crashed her Ford Focus into a stationary vehicle on Church Road, Elmswell, on October 27, 2019.

The court heard that Woolnough, of Miller Close, Elmswell, had been to a party that Saturday evening and had been drinking alcohol.

She had an arranged lift to and from the party but after arriving home, received a call from a friend who had been left stranded following an argument.

Woolnough made the “silly decision” to get into her car to try to retrieve her friend when the crash happened, the court heard.

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Georgia Lassoff, prosecuting, said police were called to the scene on Church Road, Elmswell, at 12.25am following a call from a member of the public who had witnessed the crash.

Witnesses described the Focus being driven at high speed before colliding with the parked car.

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Woolnough was found behind the wheel with blood on her face and tested positive for alcohol at the roadside.

She was taken to West Suffolk Hospital in Bury St Edmunds and a sample of blood was taken.

Woolnough was found to have 185 milligrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood – the legal limit is 80mg in 100ml of blood.

The court heard that Woolnough had no previous convictions.

Appearing at Suffolk Magistrates’ Court on Monday, Woolnough pleaded guilty to drink driving.

Ellie Carter, defending, said Woolnough had “no intention to drive” and had an arranged a lift to and from the party.

It was only after returning home, that she made the “silly decision” to drive, Miss Carter said.

Woolnough suffered a broken nose and spent five weeks off work, but no-one else was injured in the crash, the court heard.

Woolnough’s car was written off and she has not driven since the incident, Miss Carter said.

Magistrates banned Woolnough from driving for 20 months.

She was also fined £215 and ordered to pay £105 in costs and a £32 victim surcharge.

Woolnough was also offered a drink-drive awareness course, which can reduce her ban if completed.

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