Binman’s HGV driving ambition crushed after drink-driving on way home from McDonald’s

The Cardiff council worker failed to stop after causing a traffic incident, a court heard

AN ASPIRING HGV driver was caught drink-driving after a late-night trip to McDonald’s that ended in a minor traffic accident, Cardiff magistrates heard.

Louis Hale, 23, of Addicott Close, Caerau, was found to have twice the legal alcohol limit, with 83 micrograms of alcohol in his breath. The legal limit is 35 micrograms.

Hale was driving home from McDonald’s at ten past midnight on February 5 when he collided with another vehicle, prosecutor Mike Curry told the court.

He did not stop at the scene, he added. He was also found to be driving without a licence and insurance.

Choosing to represent himself, he pleaded guilty to drink driving and driving without a licence and insurance.

Hale is a binman for Cardiff Council and has a one-year-old child with his long-term partner, the court was told. They have another child on the way. He is the family’s breadwinner. The court heard he hoped to become an HGV driver in the future, but his conviction places that dream at risk.

The court agreed to reduce his penalty by 33% due to Hale’s personal circumstances.
“The cost-of-living is so high right now that we understand a high penalty would reduce his disposable income and disrupt his social life, punishing him even further,” said Mr Curry.

Magistrate Shan Clark fined Hale £150 for driving without a licence and insurance, and £350 for drink driving.

Hale was also ordered to pay the Crown Prosecution Service £85 costs, as well as a £200 surcharge. He was disqualified from driving for 20 months.

But this period will end earlier, on June 5, 2024, if he completes a drink-driving course by April 5, 2024, the court was told.