Driver Crashes hours after having general anaesthetic

driver crashes hours after having general anaesthetic

A motorist who crashed after he drove home just hours after having a general anaesthetic has been disqualified from driving.

Tomasz Zielonka, 32, of Bransbury Close, Southampton, was found guilty at Southampton Magistrates Court of driving whilst unfit to drive through drugs.

The court heard how Zielonka was driving a Ford C-Max along Bassett Avenue on May 17 when he was in collision with a Mazda.

Fortunately no one was injured as a result of the collision, which happened at 7pm.

The hearing was told how police investigations found that the 32-year-old had been in hospital just hours earlier, having had an operation that required a general anaesthetic.

The prosecutor said Zielonka was discharged at 16.45, being told by medics that he should not drive.

The court heard that he had got a lift from his girlfriend and they went to a restaurant in Portswood for some food.

However, when they went to go home, he had an argument with his girlfriend about her driving and he insisted on getting behind the wheel.

In interview, Zielonka told police that as he was driving he started to feel dizzy and lost feeling in his feet, resulting in the collision.

He claimed he was not told that he could not drive and said that he had not read the aftercare leaflets given to him as he left.

Tests later revealed that drugs from the general anaesthetic were still in his system and he was summoned to appear in court.

He pleaded not guilty but he was found guilty following a trial.

He was disqualified from driving for 12 months, fined £554 and ordered to pay £620 court costs and £55 victim surcharge.

Sgt Rebecca Hodge said: “This was an unnecessary collision which has led to the loss of Zielonka’s licence. It was extremely lucky that nobody was injured.

“I would like to use this opportunity to remind people to listen to and follow medical advice following appointments.

“The advice is given for your own safety and it is your responsibility to make sure you understand what you should and should not do after a procedure.

“Driving after a medical procedure can also invalidate your car insurance so it is not worth the risk.

She added: “This is a reminder that driving whilst unfit does not just relate to illegal drugs but also legal and prescribed drugs if they are found to impair your ability to drive safely.”