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Crash driver has to retake test

PUBLISHED: 23:09 07 April 2004 | UPDATED: 04:46 02 March 2010

A NEW driver who crashed two weeks after passing his test is today dusting off his L plates.

Richard Phillips fell foul of the two-year probation period for novice motorists after admitting driving without due care and attention.

A NEW driver who crashed two weeks after passing his test is today dusting off his L plates.

Richard Phillips fell foul of the two-year probation period for novice motorists after admitting driving without due care and attention.

The 20-year-old was given six points on his licence - only half the amount needed for an experienced driver to be banned, but enough to shunt the labourer off the road.

Phillips, of Timperley Close, Hadleigh, also admitted having no insurance when he appeared at South East Suffolk Magistrates Court to answer charges arising from the crash on December 13.

Adele Cook, prosecuting, said Phillips had accelerated through a pool of standing water near the junction of Hadleigh Road and the A1214 in Ipswich.

She said Phillips lost control of the Vauxhall Astra he was driving. The car went into a spin and smashed into three roadside trees.

When police arrived, the 20-year-old admitted he was driving too fast for the conditions.

Miss Cook said Phillips suffered minor injuries in the smash, along with the two female passengers he was carrying.

Hugh Rowland, mitigating, said Phillips passed his test at the first time of asking on December 1 - and the incident in the Astra was the first time he had driven since.

He said the novice driver borrowed the car from a friend and thought he was insured to drive it because it was fully taxed.

Mr Rowland said: "He doesn't recollect seeing the pool of water, but it was quite a severe accident. He can't explain how it happened except for the pool of water.

"He should have seen it and taken the necessary action. He hasn't driven since. He would like to drive again, but he needs to get his confidence back."

Mr Rowland said the labourer was so highly regarded by his employer he had accompanied the culprit to court.

In passing sentence, magistrates told Phillips: "This was an unfortunate start to your driving career.

"That puddle of water is fairly well known to locals and it is one of those things you have to look out for on the road."

Phillips was fined £100 for driving without due care and attention, £120 for driving without a licence and ordered to pay £40 costs.


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