A FORMER forklift truck driver reached 100mph on a motorway police chase and then rammed through a security barrier at an industrial estate.

John Brian Durkin was spotted by police driving a black Vauxhall Corsa at 60mph, twice the limit, in Hameldon Approach, Burnley, at 5am on January 15.

Burnley Crown Court heard officers followed Durkin, 34, onto Rossendale Road, where he was doing 80mph in a 40mph zone. They saw him go the wrong way around a roundabout before joining the M65 at junction nine.

Footage from a tailing police car played in court showed Durkin’s car weaving in and out of traffic before leaving the motorway at junction seven, and later driving through several red lights.

The court heard Durkin drove through a security barrier at Junction 7 Business Park, Clayton-le-Moors, and attempted to resist arrest by driving around the estate.

He refused to comply with a breath test once caught.

Stephen Parker, prosecuting, said the guard working that night said he saw a small black car driving at speed towards the estate.

Mr Parker said: “He realised it was not going to slow down and the car was being followed by police.

“The barrier was sent flying through the air.

“The cost to repair the barrier could be thousands of pounds.”

Mr Parker said Durkin was finally stopped after officers used their cars to block him in a corner.

The defendant has nine previous convictions for 25 sentences, including battery, assault, theft and aggravated vehicle taking.

The court heard Durkin was serving 14 weeks in prison for assault and had been on bail over this offence when he was caught for the dangerous driving offence.

James Heyworth, defending, said his client had fallen on hard times after losing his job in December and was struggling to cope with the death of his uncle.

Mr Heyworth said: “He decided to do what he has always done and sought alcohol. Two bottles of Lambrini and lager were mentioned in the police report.

“The defendant fully accepts it was sheer luck he did not kill himself or someone else, or cause real serious injury.

“It would not have done his family any good to go to his funeral.

“He has spent his time in custody to properly reflect on what he has done.

“He fully understands it was disgraceful.”

Durkin, of Venice Avenue, Burnley, pleaded guilty to dangerous driving, failing to provide a specimen of breath and failing to stop for a police officer. Judge Andrew Woolman jailed Durkin for eight months and banned him from from driving for 18 months.