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Drunk-driver fails to notice missing wheel for nearly three miles

A woman from Solihull was so drunk she drove home for almost three miles with one wheel missing on her Ford Ka.

33-year-old Laura Hewitt-Conway was heard driving along Widney Manor Road in Solihull in January 2015 by residents, who reported a “loud screeching noise”.

One of the onlookers who called the police thought it was the sound of a wheelclamp being dragged along the road, but it later transpired it was the sound of metal on tarmac as the wheel had fallen off.

Police were able to follow a trail of damaged tarmac and shredded rubber said to be 2.7 miles in length to the hairdresser, who was found standing by the blue Ford in her pyjamas and unsteady on her feet.

PC Tony Winter of the Solihull police was amazed the woman was unable to notice such a mechanical failing. Speaking to the Birmingham Mail, he said: “The car was making a deafening noise as it scraped its way along the road. One person who called police said they thought the car was dragging a wheel clamp with it.

“It’s incredible she managed to drive so far without colliding with other vehicles or causing a serious accident. It was extremely dangerous driving and beggars belief she couldn’t have known there was something seriously wrong with the car.”

Hewitt-Conway was found to have 78 microgrammes of alcohol per 100ml of breath, which is more than twice the 35 microgrammes limit.

Birmingham Magistrates Court handed Hewitt-Conway with a 17-month driving ban, community order of 180 hours of unpaid work and was told she must pass an extended driving test to get her licence back.

Another man recently denied rolling a car – while sitting inside the crash-damaged vehicle.

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