Horror on A11 as drink driver ploughs into people causing terrible injuries
- Credit: Supplied by Norfolk Constabulary
A drink driver ploughed into three people who had got out of their parked cars in a lay-by on the A11 near Norwich resulting in one of the men suffering "life-changing" injuries, a court has heard.
Adomas Margencolas, 35, had been spotted by other motorists driving his Jaguar car at about 80mph and "swaying from left to right" before exiting the A47 onto a slip road that took him onto the A11 near the Thickthorn roundabout.
Norwich Crown Court heard he was again spotted driving really fast before he was seen to veer to the left again and smash into a number of cars parked in a lay-by off the A11.
Hannah Williams, prosecuting, said Margengolcas smashed his vehicle into a Vauxhall Tigra before colliding with the rear of a Ford Focus which was then shunted into a Ford Focus.
Alfred Brooks, who had got out of his Tigra, which had been overheating, was struck along with two other people - Paul Nicholls and his son Thomas - who had both also got out of their cars in the layby at the time of the crash.
Miss Williams said Mr Brooks suffered the “most serious and life-changing injuries”, including multiple fractures to his left leg, and needed “life-saving treatment”.
He will need further surgery on his leg and has had his mobility "severely restricted" since the crash, which happened at about 3.10pm on November 22 last year.
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Also seriously injured was Paul Nicholls who sustained a broken nose as well as damage to his knee ligaments.
He also suffered injuries to his head which resulted in him needing skin grafts and meant the treatment he was undergoing for skin cancer had to be more invasive than it otherwise would have been.
Margencolas, of Anson Road, Great Yarmouth, who had been heading to Birmingham, was found to have 126mcg of alcohol in 100ml of blood. The legal limit is 80.
He appeared at court on Thursday (August 5) having previously admitted two counts of causing serious injury by dangerous driving and another offence of drink driving.
Before Margencolas was sentenced, the court heard moving victim impact statements, including one from Mr Brooks, read out in court by his wife, in which he described not being able to leave his home since the crash except to attend hospital appointments.
He also told how he was having to sleep in a "hospital bed" downstairs and was unable to go upstairs to sleep or use the bathroom and had to take tablets to help him sleep as he feared going to bed and "not waking up again".
He said he finds himself “sitting and crying as I feel completely useless”
“I don’t know what the future holds for me - my life has been turned completely upside down.
“Every day is a struggle and I find it difficult to think positively”.
He said he felt "depressed" and sorry for his wife who has had to stop working as a nurse to help care for him and their 13-year-old son.
Jailing Marengolcas for 28 months, Judge Alice Robinson said it was a "shocking piece of very bad driving" as a result of which others suffered "life changing injuries".
She said three people were "still suffering from their injuries eight months later" and insisted the victim impact statements made for "distressing reading".
Judge Robinson said it had been a "prolonged piece of bad driving" with the defendant travelling at "excessive speed" while being one and a half times the legal limit for driving.
He was also disqualified from driving for a total of four years and two months.
Matthew Edwards, mitigating, said the incident was more due to impairment and tiredness.
Mr Edwards said he thought he had left enough time “after consumption” of alcohol before he drove.
He said the defendant had not drunk since the crash
He said the major mitigating factor was that of remorse.