A SERVING soldier almost flattened a lamp post in a crash while nearly twice the limit, a court was told.

Daniel Ryan Foster, 21, was said not to have stopped after the collision last December 16, but was pulled up by police about half an hour later.

A roadside breath test was positive and a sample given at the police station showed 63 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath – the legal limit is 35, Burnley magistrates heard.

Foster, who ended up having to face the music twice – once in court and again when he gets back to barracks – admitted driving with excess alcohol and failing to stop after an accident.

The defendant, of Burnley Road, Briercliffe, was fined £350, with a £35 victim surcharge and £85 costs. He was banned for 18 months.

Andrew Robinson, prosecuting, said at about 11.25am, Foster reversed into a lamp post on Lower Tentre, Burnley, causing extensive damage and knocking it almost horizontal.

He was later stopped in Eastern Avenue and said he drove off because he panicked. Lee Hammond, for Foster, said the sister of the defendant's friend called the police.

The solicitor continued: “He stayed about 15 minutes, waiting for the police to arrive and the longer he waited, the more he started to panic. He knew his details were known and he then made away from the scene.”

Mr Hammond went on: “There are further consequences on top of what this court will do when he gets back to the barracks.”