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Teenager banned from the roads for drink driving - on a 15mph LAWNMOWER

por Kathryn Flinchum (2020-06-30)

Teenager banned from the roads for drink driving - on a 15mph LAWNMOWER

By Daily Mail Reporter
Updated: 09:25 EDT, 7 July 2011

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A teenager has been banned from driving after he drunkenly got behind the wheel of his father's £1,700 lawn-mower.

Joel Maunder, 18, boarded the 15mph vehicle with the intention of visiting some friends, but saw his journey cut short by police.

The A-level student had driven about a mile from his family's £500,000 home in the affluent village of Dinas Powys, in the Vale of Glamorgan, South Wales.

Drunk: Joel Maunder was caught driving a lawnmower when he was more than three times over the drink drive limit

His blood-alcohol level was found to be more than twice the legal limit when he was stopped on a Saturday night last month.

The sixth-form pupil originally faced prosecution for being in charge of a mechanically-propelled vehicle while unfit - the equivalent of drunkenly riding an electric bicycle.


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However, prosecutors ruled he should be charged with drink-driving because the Lawnflite ride-on mower he had taken on the road is motor-driven. Its petrol engine is about an eighth as powerful as that of a Ford Focus.

Maunder was last week banned from driving for 17 months and ordered to pay costs of £100.

Magistrates said he could cut four months off if he completed a driving course - in a car.

He had driven nearly a mile down the road on a trip to see friends on a Saturday evening last month when he was pulled over.

Wrong side of the law-n: Schoolboy was banned from driving for 17 months after taking a lawn mower (like the one pictured) for a ride

Prosecutor Richie Paul said: 'He was slowly travelling down a road when he was spotted on the Lawnflite vehicle by passing police.

'He was breathalysed and found to have 83 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath - the legal limit is 35.' 

Maunder pleaded his innocence when he was spotted mowing through the well-heeled village of Dinas Powys, Vale of Glamorgan - but police said he was on the wrong side of the road.

A spokesman for mower-maker E P Barras, based in Bicester, Oxon, said: 'This is the first case we've ever heard of in this country of drink-driving a lawnmower although there was one in the States a few years ago.

'Naturally, we would advise people not to use this sort of machinery after drinking alcohol and clearly it should not be taken on the roadways in that condition.

Going for a drive: View of Murch Road in Dinas Powys near Cardiff where Mr Maunder was apprehended

'A ride-on mower is a motor-driven vehicle and subject to the same laws of the land.'

An A-level pupil at Stanwell Comprehensive School in Penarth, near Cardiff, https://set-magazine.com/best-self-propelled-lawn-mower/ Maunder lives at home with his property developer father Grant, 43, and mother Esther, 42.

His mother said after the case: 'It has been very embarrassing for us and we don't want to say any more.'

ISSN: 1980-5861