Trucker jailed for drink-driving

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A former trucker who turned to drink after the death of his partner was jailed for causing a three-car crash in Doncaster.

Neil Batten had been to a party the night before and downed a two-litre bottle of cider and two cans of strong lager before driving his VW Passat.

His 24-year-old daughter begged him not to drive the three miles home but he insisted on driving.

Nobody was seriously hurt in the accident on the A614 between Lindholme and Blaxton.

Batten, aged 47, of Gibson Road, Lindholme, admitted drink-driving and dangerous driving.

He overtook a VW Polo at speed “seemingly oblivious of the vehicles on the road” and stayed on the wrong side of the carriageway then attempted to overtake a Peugeot.

But a Hyundai 4x4 travelling in the opposite direction caused Batten to brake and swerve into the rear of the Peugeot which ended up in a ditch.

Batten’s car veered out of control and collided with the Hyundai, said Neil Coxon, prosecuting, at Sheffield Crown Court.

When police arrived he told them: “I was driving, it was my fault.”

He was twice the drink drive limit.

Four people and a dog needed treatment.

Michael Cane-Soothill, defending, said he had done 100,000 miles a year as a lorry driver but gave up his job to look after his partner who was diagnosed with cancer.

She died in 2012 and he began drinking to hide his grief.

Batten was jailed for eight months and banned from driving for two years.