Chips end up costing €700 and man's driving licence

CRASHED INTO TWO PARKED CARS ON WAY HOME

A WEXFORD MAN who crashed into two parked cars while trying to catch his chipper food from falling has been fined €700 and disqualified from driving for four months.

Thomas O'Leary, 16 Kennedy Park, Wexford, pleaded guilty to careless driving and hit and run at Upper John Street on September 18 last, when he crashed into cars belonging to Marie Roche and Gail Gregg and almost lost a finger in the process, before driving off.

The Gardaí were called to the scene of the hit and run incident where significant damage had been caused to a Nissan Micra and a Renault Megane. They also recovered pieces from a third car, a Honda, at the scene.

It was the investigation of this debris that led the Gardaí to O'Leary, who quickly admitted that it belonged to his car and that he was responsible for the accident at Upper John Street.

O'Leary told the Gardaí that he had taken his eyes off the road. The court heard that damage amounting to €2,448 was caused to one of the cars and there had been no estimate on the damage caused to the other. The two injured parties were compensated by O'Leary's insurance company.

Ed King, for O'Leary, said that his client 'panicked' on the night. He had gotten a takeaway in a local chipper and put it beside him in the cat, but as he drove up John Street it slipped and he went to catch it, losing control of his car.

Mr King said his 29-year-old client, a qualified engineer, hopes to get a job in wind turbine maintenance and will need his driving licence for that. However, Judge Donnchadh O Buachalla pointed out that he had left the scene.

Mr King said that O'Leary was injured himself during the incident and had to go to Waterford Regional Hospital to have his finger stitched back on. Inspector Pat McDonald said that hit and run incidents are serious 'whether anyone is injured or not'.

Judge O Buachalla fined €400 for careless driving and €300 for hit and run, while he was also disqualified from driving for four months.

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