North-east drink-driver ‘lucky to survive’ Christmas Day crash

Daniel Watt leaves Aberdeen Sheriff Court
Daniel Watt leaves Aberdeen Sheriff Court

A drink-driver was “lucky to have escaped with his life” when he crashed his car after a festive drinking session went wrong.

Daniel Watt had been enjoying a drink with family on Christmas Day last year and left the house – only to return to find his sister had taken his bed.

Annoyed by this, he argued with his family and then “stormed out”, intending to drive to his dad’s house.

Aberdeen Sheriff Court

However, a short time later, the 21-year-old crashed his grey Vauxhall Corsa, which landed on its side on the A96 Inverurie to Pitcaple road. The vehicle was written off.

Watt – who was almost four times over the drink-drive limit – was treated by paramedics at the scene and, at Aberdeen Sheriff Court yesterday, his defence agent Gregor Kelly said: “He is lucky to have escaped with his life.

“It is only by good fortune there wasn’t a serious accident and serious injury or worse was not caused to Watt or anyone else.”

Fiscal depute Felicity Merson told the court Watt, an apprentice accountant, had been drinking at home on Christmas Day before visiting friends – and returned at 3.30am on Boxing Day to find his sister and her partner had taken his bedroom.

She added: “At 3.30am, the doorbell went and the accused returned.

“He was extremely agitated his room had been taken and this led to an argument as he was annoyed.”

Watt drove off and his family called police.

A short time later, he called his mum to say he had crashed on the northbound A96.

Officers found Watt had slurred speech and there was a strong smell of alcohol.

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An ambulance was called and a reading found 196 milligrams of alcohol in 100 millilitres of blood – almost four times over the limit of 50 milligrams.

Watt, whose address was given in court as Westburn Square, Inverurie, admitted drink-driving.

Mr Kelly said: “They had an argument and he stormed out.

“Since this matter arose, Watt has started to address his problems.

“He had mental health issues and has sought help.

“It was a sad situation and an appalling way to act.”

Sheriff Donald Ferguson banned Watt from driving for two years and ordered him to take part in a drink-driving rehabilitation course.

Watt was also fined £1,350.