Driver legs it after car rolls




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A woman whose vehicle rolled several times went on to run away from the crash, and refuse a blood alcohol test, a court has heard. Taylor Marie Irain, 25, had been with friends in Picton on October 30 last year. A police summary of facts said her two friends were passengers in her car, which she drove from Picton along Queen Charlotte Drive during the early evening. As she approached a corner at Linkwater she lost control of her car, and her vehicle rolled several times. The summary said she took the corner too fast, at an estimated 90kmh. The summary said an ambulance was called, and initial assessment indicated that there could be some spinal injuries. Irain then fled the scene before police arrived. Upon police arriving there was no indication on where she was. She later presented at Wairau Hospital, police said. At about 9.15pm she was required to give a blood alcohol sample, which she agreed to. However, on seeing the doctor, she refused the test, the summary said. At about 11.35pm, police visited Wairau Hospital in relation to the incident. Irain said she was the driver of the car, but did not remember driving. She also said she had only had about two beers. On Monday, Irain appeared in the Blenheim District Court, where she pleaded guilty to a charge of refusing a blood sample, and a charge of dangerous driving. Her lawyer Kent Arnott said she had no previous convictions and, ‘‘not even a speeding infringement’’. Arnott said Irain pleaded guilty at the first opportunity, and was clearly remorseful for her actions. ‘‘She panicked and that’s why she wasn’t upfront with police,’’ Arnott said. He said Irain remembered ‘‘very little’’ about refusing the blood sample, and had suffered physically and emotionally. He said the spinal injuries mentioned in the summary of facts was actually in relation to Irain. She was in a neck brace for ‘‘some time’’ following the crash, and community work would be difficult for her, Arnott said. She had apologised to the two friends who were in the crash, and was in regular contact with them, Arnott said. Judge Tony Zohrab said he considered Irain’s age and lack of prior offending. ‘‘You are obviously intelligent, and realised it could have worked out a lot worse,’’ Judge Zohrab said. Irain was convicted and fined $800 for refusing the bloodalcohol test and disqualified from driving for 7 months. She was also fined $300 for the dangerous driving charge. ‘‘You need to understand if you are back for another [drinkdriving] charge, you will be looking at another disqualification,’’ Judge Zohrab said. ‘‘You need to make sure you make this is your one and only appearance in the court system.’’