A STUDENT who was nearly two-and-a-half times over the drink-drive limit caused a six-vehicle crash as traffic was being diverted around a fatal accident on the A1, a court heard.

One of the vehicles contained a traffic officer who had noted that the car was being driven erratically while following behind, said Martin Butterworth, prosecuting.

Northallerton magistrates heard that David Young, 19, had been drinking for most of the previous night when he met up with friends in Leeds for freshers’ week.

That morning the teenager, of St Nicholas Drive, Richmond, North Yorkshire, went back to the city centre to collect his Ford Focus car, intending to go to McDonalds, but decided to drive home.

Mr Butterworth said he reached the Catterick area at 8.15am on September 12 to find the road closed following a fatal accident involving three lorries.

Young, a second-year economics student at Hull University, was diverted onto the B6271 when he swerved onto the other side of the road at Great Langton, near Northallerton.

Mr Butterworth said: “His speed varied and he was swerving in the carriageway, then drove into the opposite carriageway which caused a collision with a Vauxhall Corsa travelling in the opposite direction.

“The Corsa then collided with the vehicle containing a highways traffic officer who was driving a Land Rover Discovery.

“A Ford Escort travelling behind collided with the Corsa and two other cars were involved as well.

“A Peugot 306 stopped as a witness to the accident and another car drove into that. In total, six vehicles were involved, all of which suffered some damage.”

No one was seriously hurt, but Mr Butterworth said Young could have caused a more serious accident.

Amrit Jandoo, mitigating, said: “He accepts he was drunk. He felt fine to drive the vehicle, but he accepts he was drinking most of the night and probably wasn’t in a state to drive.

“This is a young man who has a very bright future.

So far as the elements surrounding the case, it’s an isolated incident.”

Young admitted drinkdriving and driving without due care and attention and was banned for 22 months and ordered to pay a £165 fine with £45 costs.