Generic photos of liquor bottle shop, alcohol, brown paper bag, wine, beer, spirit, spirits, grog shop.
Generic photos of liquor bottle shop, alcohol, brown paper bag, wine, beer, spirit, spirits, grog shop.

Woman six-times limit pulled over to drink a bottle of wine

A WOMAN who recorded more than six-times the legal alcohol limit after she crashed her car into a ditch has been slammed by a magistrate who said he was "surprised she was even alive".

Bowen resident Wanthakan Sri-On, 44, pleaded guilty in Bowen Magistrates Court for high-range drink driving on May 26.

Police prosecutor sergeant Emma Myors told the court that Sri-On was found on Norris St, Bowen, about 8.20pm, after her red Holden Captiva crashed into a drainage ditch.

Police attended the scene where a number of witnesses had called in the traffic incident and were assisting Sri-On, who nominated herself as the driver to police.

"(Police) observed (Sri-On) to have bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and she had difficulty standing," Sgt Myors said.

"She was taken to Bowen Police Station for testing and said she had drunk one bottle of wine, nine hours ago."

Sri-On recorded a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.326, more than six times the legal alcohol limit.

Defence lawyer Cleo Rewald said there was a "backstory" to Sri-On's offending and said it came off the back of five-days of arguments with her ex-partner.

Ms Rewald said Sri-On had resided in Australia since 2000 and lived in Bowen for the last ten years with her partner, spending time working on farms and in hospitality jobs.

"There were some arguments and the partner kicked her out of the home. When she left the house she took two bottles of wine with her," she said.

"As she made her way into town she tried to make contact with a friend she was going to stay with, but couldn't get a hold of her, so she pulled over and consumed a bottle of wine in the car.

"She can't give me a reason why she drove, except that she just didn't want to be at home. She has instructed the relationship is over and she is now staying with friends."

Ms Rewald said the crime appeared very out of character for Sri-On, who came before the court with a clean criminal record, and said it appeared the car had slid into the ditch and received minimal to no damage.

Magistrate James Morton told the court he doubted Sri-On had consumed one bottle of wine and said he was surprised she was even standing, "let alone driving".

"You clearly did not think about the other people who share the road with you, pulling over and drinking a bottle of wine is just not acceptable," he said.

"You're obviously a person of good character and history but I cannot ignore the danger you posed to other motorists."

Mr Morton fined Sri-On $1200 and disqualified her from driving for 15 months, with convictions recorded.



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