Whilst browising the BBC Scotland News pages this evening before heading to bed I discovered a story that I wanted to blog on before I went to bed.
On Sunday afternoon, Central Scotland Police stoppsed a car in Falkirk. The driver, who had been carrying her five-year-old daughter in the car, was almost four times the legal limit (the legal limit being 35 microgrammes of alcohol per 100ml of breath). The BBC reports that a member of the public removed the five-year-old from the rear of the car and the car was stopped by officers from Central Scotland Police shortly after.
The driver appeared at Falkirk Sherff Court on Monday and entered a guilty plea in answer to three charges, which included charges relating to drink driving and putting the child at risk.
Chief Inspector Donald McMillan, of the area’s road policing unit, said:
This motorist was prevented from causing serious injury to herself, her child and other road users.
The child was in an extremely distressed state and we are thankful the incident didn’t result in serious injuries.
However, this should serve as a reminder to motorists that as soon as they get behind a wheel they have a responsibility to themselves, their passengers and other road users.
I agree totally with the tone of Chief Inspector McMillan’s comment and particulalry the content of the final sentence quoted above. This is a responsibility often forgotten by many drivers, drunk or sober, and it is worth highlighting. Drivers should remember that when behind the wheel of a car they are in-charge of a potentially lethal weapon. That weapon is leathal to not only them, but to any other road user.
Assistant Chief Constable Jim Green of Strathclyde Police, who is secretary of the Association of Chief Police Officers road policing business area, said:
Never in my 29 years of policing, have I ever heard of such an incident where such a young child has alerted members of the public to a parent’s totally unacceptable and inexcusable behaviour.
While the court will address the driving consequences of this woman’s behaviour, it is the underlying issues that have to be addressed by all our partners who are concerned with this driver and many other motorists’ well-being as well as that of the general and motoring public.
The mother shall return to court next month to be sentenced.