Mechanic gets driving ban for tailgating police car

A car mechanic in Scotland has received a driving ban after unknowingly tailgating undercover policemen for 15 miles.

Christopher Cownie was travelling on the A90 dual carriageway from Dundee to Perth but his impatience got the better of him and he began to get dangerously close to the car in front, which was driving at the 70mph limit. Having driven just five feet behind them, the 26-year-old eventually undertook the undercover policemen's car before they chased after him and stopped him – he was subsequently taken to court where he received a seven-month driving ban and a £600 fine.

As the defendant's solicitor Billy Somerville pointed out at the hearing: "Being a mechanic he is required to test vehicles. It does involve a lot of driving. It would be difficult for the business to sustain paying him if he lost his licence."

To drive customers' cars, Mr Cownie will need to be named on his garage's road risks insurance policy. However, the business will struggle to add the mechanic as a named driver on the policy following his ban. Moreover, while he is serving the ban he will be limited in the tasks he can perform in the testing and repairing of other people's vehicles.

According to the Daily Star, the undercover policemen in the car in front of Mr Cownie issued several warnings for the tailgater to drop back, which he ignored. On hearing the case, Sheriff Fiona Tait at Perth Sheriff Court said she had no option but to ban the motorist.