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Last Updated: Thursday, 21 April, 2005, 14:50 GMT 15:50 UK
Trucker fined for eating crisps
A lorry driver has been fined 250 for eating a packet of crisps while negotiating a roundabout.

Andrew Kitch, 35, of Hullock Road, Newton Aycliffe, County Durham, was caught steering his removal lorry with his elbows as he munched on the snack.

A Northumbria Police traffic officer spotted him on a mini-roundabout in North Tyneside, in December.

The same force was criticised for prosecuting a nursery nurse for eating an apple while she was driving.

On Thursday, North Tyneside Magistrates' Court heard Kitch held the packet in his left hand, while he fed himself with his right, and used his forearms and elbows to steer.

Kitch, who represented himself at court, denied the offence.

'Proper control'

Magistrates found him guilty and fined him 250 for failing to keep proper control of the lorry, plus 200 costs.

A Northumbria Crown Prosecution Service spokeswoman said: "Driving a vehicle whist not in proper control of it, for whatever reason, is potentially lethal.

"That is why the CPS takes these types of offences very seriously."

The same force prosecuted nursery nurse Sarah McCaffery in January for eating an apple while she made a left hand turn.

South Tyneside Magistrates fined the 23-year-old from Hebburn 60 and ordered her to pay 100 costs for not being in proper control of her Ford Ka.

Despite criticism after Ms McCaffery's prosecution, the force insisted motorists would continue to be put before the courts for eating or drinking behind the wheel.

What can drivers do at the wheel?
16 Feb 05 |  Magazine

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