Driving ban for eight-passenger crash

AMY MAAS
Last updated 12:49 20/11/2012

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A drunk teenager who swerved "violently" causing her VW Golf carrying eight friends - including one in the boot - to crash on the motorway has been banned from driving.

Jessica Howard-Bowring, 18, was today sentenced at the north Shore District Court to six months supervision and was disqualified from driving for seven months.

Howard-Bowring was charged with driving with excess breath alcohol and reckless driving after getting behind the wheel after a party and causing the accident near the Constellation Dr on-ramp on September 8.

Police hailed it a "miracle" that none of the teenagers involved were seriously injured.

The court today heard that after the North Shore party, Howard-Bowring and eight others crammed into the car to head into the city.

Three people were in the front, five in the back and one in the boot.

"You swerved your steering wheel in a violent manner and your friends asked you to stop," Judge Jan Walker said.

"You continued to swerve until you crashed into the motorway barrier. You are extremely lucky there were no serious injuries."

Howard-Bowring and several of her passengers suffered minor injuries and the teenager in the boot was knocked unconscious.

Judge Walker said she hoped Howard-Bowring had received a "wake-up call".

"I'm pleased to hear that you and your friends are getting on, but you have quite a bit to make up to them," she said. 

As well as attending an alcohol programme, Howard-Bowring has been ordered to pay $265.78 court costs and medical bills totalling $193.

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