POLICE received a report of a one vehicle road traffic collision in which a man was trapped and was “having difficulty breathing” and officers then saw a van in a ditch at Island Road in the Shankbridge area between Ballymena and Antrim, Ballymena Magistrates Court was told.
Ronan Heatley (31), of Magherabeg Road, Randalstown, was found to have been driving with excess alcohol.
After midnight on September 14 last year the defendant was taken from the vehicle and once outside he was staggering and slurring his speech.
He was taken to hospital and a blood sample gave a reading of 86 – the blood limit is 80.
Defence barrister Neil Moore said the defendant had an unblemished 14 year driving record.
He said the defendant, a plasterer, had drink taken earlier in the day and after having a “heated disagreement” when he returned home he thought he was ok to drive
The lawyer said it had been “an error in judgment” and the van slid off the road into the ditch.
The court was told the defendant sustained “some injury” and the van was written off and he is still having to pay off “outstanding finance” on the vehicle.
The defendant was banned from driving for a year and fined £300.