A COACH driver has been sentenced for travelling carelessly by a judge who called his offence “one of the most serious of its type”.
Passengers were heard “screaming” moments before Darryle Warren’s bus left the road and “bounced” on to a main A66 roundabout on the outskirts of Keswick, becoming bogged down in the mud.
Warren, 52, had been driving the Reays coach back to West Cumbria following a rugby league Grand Final in Manchester on October 7 in 2017.
After concerns were expressed about the bus “drifting” between lanes and partially on to the M6 northbound hard shoulder, Warren reportedly said to the trip organiser who enquired about his welfare: “Tell them all to bloody calm down.”
Warren admitted careless driving, telling police shortly after the 11-20pm collision he had misjudged his downhill approach to the roundabout while following his sat-nav because he didn’t know the area.
“I’m totally at fault for this,” he told an officer. “I’m disgusted at myself and it’s a mistake I’ll never make again.”
But he denied dangerous driving and, after a trial at Carlisle Crown Court, he was today (FRI) unanimously acquitted of that allegation.
Warren, of Scotland Road, Carnforth, was sentenced this afternoon, receiving a £400 fine and ordered to pay £80 costs. He was also given nine penalty points by Judge Peter Davies, who heard Warren would see his current work for a new employer terminated if banned from driving.
Warren told jurors he mounted the roundabout having not wanted to risk losing control, and concluding it was the “only place I can put that vehicle safely and not have a lot of casualties”.
Judge Davies told him: “You are to be congratulated for that, rather than lose your job.”
But the judge also said: “As an offence of careless driving it is one of the most serious of its type.”