Man let child drive Jeep on dual carriageway

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A man who let a primary schoolboy drive his Jeep Cherokee on a dual carriageway has been banned from the roads.

Mark Sale, 45, was caught when a fellow motorist spotted the lad behind the wheel of the 4x4 on the A59 Longton bypass, near Much Hoole - with another boy in the back.

Preston magistrates heard Sale swore at the man and dismissed it as ‘a bit of fun’, despite the car being seen to swerve around the road. The man reported Sale to police.

Garage owner Sale later admitted allowing the boy to drive, claiming he knew the lad had driven a car on private land for three years. He said he had suffered a migraine and could not drive himself.

Sale, from Blackpool Road, Ashton, Preston, later admitted allowing someone to drive without a licence or insurance when he appeared before magistrates in Preston yesterday. He was banned from driving for nine months and ordered to pay £481 in a fine, costs and victim surcharge.

Prosecuting, Eddie Harrison said: “On entering the (Gill Lane) roundabout the Jeep clipped both inside and outside kerbs. A motorist was able to pass the Jeep and could see a young child driving the vehicle, with the defendant alongside him and another child in the back.”

When it pulled off the road a short time later, he also saw the defendant switch seats with the boy.

James Ball, defending, said his client was very sorry. He said Sale had been suffering from severe migraines and was taking medication. He had to pull over and went to the side of the car to be sick.

He got back in the passenger seat and didn’t feel well enough to drive.

Mr Ball added had he had his mobile phone, Sale would have called his wife or a friend, but he had left it at work.

He added: “We are talking a quarter of a mile. There was no other traffic around. There was no accident.”

Chairman of the bench, Ann Hasnip, told Sale: “All of us are familiar with this road. It is incredibly busy at all times, including a Saturday morning, when this happened.

“It is very fortunate for everybody there was not an accident which there very easily could have been.”