South Scotland

Wrong-way motorway drink driver jailed

A74(M)
Image caption Hunter admitted driving dangerously in the wrong direction on the A74(M)

A drink driver who caused numerous crashes while heading the wrong way on the A74(M) in southern Scotland has been jailed for 18 months.

David Hunter, 49, of Ballochnie Drive, Airdrie, admitted driving dangerously over two miles of the motorway between Lockerbie and Ecclefechan last August.

A court heard drivers were horrified to see his van heading towards them.

Hunter, who admitted a previous drink-drive offence, was also banned from driving for eight years.

Dumfries Sheriff Court was told it was early afternoon when northbound motorists saw a small van heading towards them.

Several had to take evasive action to avoid a head-on collision and three collided with the central reservation before the van crashed into another vehicle.

Became confused

When Hunter was seen stepping out of the van he staggered and was helped to the verge, smelling strongly of alcohol.

His solicitor stressed that it was fortunate there were no serious injuries.

He added that there was a history of alcoholism in Hunter's family and that particular day he had been doing a favour for a friend and they had had a glass of wine.

This had resulted in Hunter buying alcohol and he had little recollection of the events other than taking a roundabout and becoming confused.

He had not driven or taken a drink since.

Sheriff Kenneth Ross said it was a serious case particularly with a previous conviction and there was no alternative to a custodial sentence.

More on this story

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites