Overtake forced van driver to slow down

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A Tyrone motorist spotted by police overtaking two lorries on a rise in the road and forcing an oncoming van to slow down, was fined £200 at Magherafelt Magistrates Court.

Forty-six-year-old Neil Harrison, of Loughview Gardens, Coalisland, also picked up three penalty points for driving without due care and attention.

Imposing the penalties, District Judge Oonagh Mullan remarked that it was a “bad piece of driving.”

Counsel prosecuting told the court the offence happened on April 6 this year at Desertmartin Road, Moneymore.

He said police observed a silver coloured car being driven by the defendant overtake a vehicle ahead before being held up by the two lorries.

The lawyer said Harrison then pulled out on a rise in the road and overtook the lorries, forcing an oncoming van to slow down.

He said the defendant was stopped by the police and he was apologetic for his driving when it was pointed out to him by the officers.

Counsel added that the road conditions were wet at the time and there was a lot of spray water making for difficult driving.

Harrison, who was not professionally represented, said he had been driving for nine years and had no record.

He blamed the incident on “a lapse of judgement.”

Ms Mullan said although the driving was bad, she took into account the defendant’s clear record and the way he had met the charge.