Drink driver put primary school children at risk

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A woman who reversed into a car outside a Portadown primary school while collecting her grandson was well over the drink drive limit.

Teresa Studzinska (49), Westland Road, Portadown, admitted three offences when she appeared last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.

For driving with excess alcohol in her breath she was fined £500, ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy and banned for 12 months.

Fines of £100 and concurrent 12 month bans were imposed for failing to stop and failing to remain after an accident.

District Judge, Mrs Bernie Kelly, also ordered forfeiture of the car she was driving.

The court heard that on February 26 this year at a collision took place outside Millington Primary School in Craigavon Avenue, Portadown.

A car reversed into a parked vehicle and left the scene before a witness stopped the car and could smell alcohol on the driver’s breath.

When police arrived the defendant was inside the school and she failed a breath test.

An evidential test gave a reading of 99.

Through an interpreter Studzinska said she didn’t know what to say and explained that she had been collecting her six-year-old grandson.

Judge Kelly said: “How many children does she think she could have killed that day?

“She reversed into a parked car she didn’t see, what was to stop her reversing over a child?”

The defendant claimed that her ABS sensor wasn’t working.

Judge Kelly added: “Going to school in the middle of the day to collect a child when over the legal limit is putting every single child’s life at risk at that school.”

She said the defendant had started drinking the previous evening and the next day she was still over the legal limit.

“You cannot go to school to collect a child when you are drunk,” added the judge.