Drunk behind the wheel of an Esky

Christopher Petrie with his motorised Esky.
Christopher Petrie with his motorised Esky.

HAD a young man been drunk on a horse, rather than a 50cc, two-stroke motorised Esky, he would not be facing court, a magistrate said yesterday.

Christopher Ian Petrie, 23, of Tewantin, faced Noosa Court for driving a motorised Esky down a Hastings St footpath.

Mr Petrie pleading guilty to driving without a licence and under the influence of alcohol.

The professional Muay Thai boxer was convicted and fined $500 for driving with a blood alcohol of 1.60% and disqualified from obtaining a licence for nine months.

Mr Petrie and his Esky had a Saturday night out in June.

He appeared in court after an adjournment to establish whether his boy toy was in fact a motor vehicle.

And in fact, because of its combustible engine, it was found to fall into that category.

The security industry worker came to the notice of police at 11.25pm when he and a mate decided to go for a ride from Noosaville to Hastings St.

Solicitor Bernard Bradley told the court his client had taken the opportunity of a day off to have his motorised Esky repaired by a mechanically minded friend.

During the course of the repairs they enjoyed a few drinks and on finishing the job, decided to take the Esky for a test drive.

Mr Bradley said his client had purchased the Esky, a Black Extreme Cooler Motorised Quad, online through a man named Willie Snook for $600 and a $30 delivery charge for “a bit of a giggle” and as a novelty article.

“He didn’t think about it being a motor vehicle in the usual sense,” Mr Bradley said.

Magistrate John Parker said he did not condone drink driving, but this was an unusual set of circumstances and he accepted that Mr Petrie did not think of the Esky as a car.

“I am not going to be too hard on you,” he said.

“Nevertheless, you were in a motor vehicle.”

Mr Petrie said the Esky could carry two cartons of beer and reach a speed of 20kmh.

“He didn’t think about it being a motor vehicle in the usual sense.”

Topics:  drink driving esky

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