Magistrates have warned a Castlemartin man, caught behind the wheel while nearly four times the drink-drive limit, that his actions could have been ‘catastrophic’.

Thomas Griffiths, of Sandy Leys, pleaded guilty to driving while over the legal alcohol limit when he appeared before Haverfordwest magistrates on Tuesday, April 10.

Sian Vaughan, prosecuting, told the court that officers stopped Griffiths in Narberth, at 1.15am on March 24, after becoming concerned that his Landrover Freelander was being driven too fast for the road layout.

Griffiths, 28, who had a previous conviction for a similar offence in 2011, was found to have 130mg of alcohol in 100ml of breath, the legal limit is 35mg.

The bench heard that he had intended to get a taxi home after a night out in Narberth, but an incident in a pub triggered memories of a traumatic childhood experience and he panicked.

David Williams, defending, told the court that Griffiths had lost his job at an insurance company as a direct result of the offence, and was receiving medication for anxiety and depression and counselling for PTSD.

Magistrates imposed a 12 week prison sentence, suspended for two years, and banned Griffiths from driving for four years.

He was also ordered to complete 200 hours of unpaid word as part of a two year community order, and will pay £200 in court costs and a surcharge.

The chairman of the bench said: “It’s an excessive amount of alcohol, quite staggeringly high.”

“The potential for damage and destruction in Narberth that night was quite considerable. You were in charge of a big vehicle. It is very fortunate that nothing happened.

“The consequences of drink-driving are potentially catastrophic.”