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Delivery driver with 14 penalty points on licence escapes ban

PUBLISHED: 15:19 16 December 2019 | UPDATED: 15:19 16 December 2019

Norwich Magistrates Court. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Norwich Magistrates Court. PICTURE: Jamie Honeywood

Jamie Honeywood Archant Norwich Norfolk

A delivery driver has been spared a driving ban - despite having amassed more than a dozen penalty points on his licence.

Prashant Salgaonkar, 41, had eight points placed on his driving licence by magistrates on Monday for two separate driving offences committed while behind the wheel of a Mercedes Sprinter van.

On top of the six points he already had on his licence going into the hearing, this took him to 14 points in total, which potential disqualifications coming into play when a motorist has 12.

However, after the driver, who works for DPD, was able to convince magistrates of his excessive hardship, the bench spared him a ban.

Salgaonkar, of Walpole Gardens, Norwich, appeared before magistrates in Norwich to face a number of charges, including driving without due care and speeding.

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The charges related to two separate incidents - on March 6 and June 1 - in the same van, the latter of which saw Salgaonkar's vehicle crash into a Ford Focus and career off Stone Road in Yaxham and into a ditch.

Neal Carr, prosecuting, said how in the June crash the defendant had been approaching the bend at an inappropriate speed, causing him to collide with the Focus.

The previous incident, on March 6, said saw Salgaonker drive at 75mph on the A47 Southern Bypass.

Salgaonkar pleaded guilty to all but two charges before him, with those he denied not being held against him. However, he argued that a disqualification from driving would cause him excessive hardship.

He said: "I apologise for my mistake but if I lose my licence I will lose my job and I will lose my home. I drive around 75 miles a day working eight hours a day, six days a week."

Salgaonkar said his earnings provided the vast majority of income for his household, with a recent knee injury limiting his wife - who works as a housekeeper at the University of East Anglia - to just four hours of minimum wage work a week.

He was ordered to pay £595 to the courts and given eight penalty points.

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