Captain drunk in charge of oil rig

A ship's captain yesterday appeared in court on a charge of being drunk in charge of his vessel.

A ship's captain yesterday appeared in court on a charge of being drunk in charge of his vessel.

William Phillips, 58, of Maunders Court in Liverpool, was arrested in Yarmouth on Monday night with 53mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath - 35mg being the legal limit.

Yesterday at Yarmouth magistrates' court he pleaded not guilty to a charge of being the master pilot seaman on duty and consuming alcohol while in charge of a vessel.

Kevin Batch, defending, said oil rig supply vessel Highlands Champion had been berthed in Yarmouth port when the offence is said to have taken place.

Magistrates elected to try Phillips themselves rather than send him to crown court, which means the maximum penalty will be a fine rather than imprisonment.

He was bailed to appear before Yarmouth magistrates on August 25 for a pre-trial review.