AN Ilminster pensioner who was more than double the drink drive limit when he fell to the ground after getting out of his car has been given a 17-month driving ban.

Residents living in Ile Court contacted the police after seeing Dugald Shaw park his BMW at an angle in a parking bay and then fell to the ground, hitting his head.

When police arrived they noticed there was damage to the defendant’s vehicle and they could smell alcohol on his breath.

Shaw, 70, of Ile Court, Ilminster, pleaded guilty to driving a BMW on June 18 after consuming excess alcohol when he appeared before Somerset Magistrates at Yeovil.

Emma Lenanton, prosecuting, said that the police were called at 11.45pm after reports of an incident involving a car and a male.

“They found a BMW stationary and at an angle in a parking bay and there was damage to the nearside front wheel,” she said.

“Members of the public said the male driver had got out and then fell to the ground and hit his head.

“He smelt of alcohol and required urgent medical assistance but provided a positive roadside breath test before being taken to Musgrove Park Hospital in Taunton.”

While at the hospital a blood sample was taken which produced a reading of 202mlg of alcohol in 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 80mlg of alcohol.

Defending solicitor Ray Peters said that Shaw admitted to police he was over the limit after attending a barbecue.

“He took some friends back home and while there was asked if he would like a whiskey, and quite a large one was poured,” he said.

“He foolishly drank it and realises now that it was not a sensible thing to do and regrets the consequences of his actions.”

He said that Shaw had no recollection of his arrest and could not account how he ended up on the ground.

Alongside the disqualification the magistrates fined the defendant £150 and ordered him to pay £85 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.