A motorist in West Sussex has been convicted and disqualified from driving after he was caught driving with a sofa and a mattress loaded onto the soft roof of his convertible car.
The incident occurred in April 2021 when Matthew Dummer, 34, loaded the furniture onto the roof of a Renault coupe.
PC Tom Van Der Wee from the Roads Policing Unit spotted the car parked outside Dummer’s home address in the village of Stedham and warned him not to drive with the items on the roof.
Despite the warning, Dummer was later seen driving on the A286 in Singleton with the same load being carried.
A notice of intended prosecution (NIP) for dangerous driving was sent to Dummer, who resides in Common View, Stedham, and is currently unemployed. Choosing to go to trial at Portsmouth Crown Court, Dummer was found guilty of the charge.
During the sentencing hearing on July 6th, Dummer was disqualified from driving for one year.
The court further ordered him to complete 60 hours of unpaid work and pay £95 in court costs.
Speaking after the case, PC Van Der Wee said:
“It should be obvious to any competent driver just how ridiculous it is carrying a load such as this on a soft top car.
“By forgoing all common sense and ignoring my warning, he put other road users at significant risk.
“A vehicle and its load are subjected to a number of forces when in motion. Had this particular load have come loose and struck a pedestrian, cyclist or indeed any other road user, we would almost certainly have been dealing with a fatality.
“As well as being disqualified from driving for 12 months, Dummer must now re-do his driving test and will inevitably face higher insurance premiums as a result of this disqualification.”
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