A SECRETARY from Kelso who was involved in an accident while almost five times the legal alcohol limit has been banned from the road for 16 months and fined £500 at Jedburgh Sheriff Court.

Alison McGlasson, of Shedden Park Road, pleaded guilty to driving with a breath/alcohol count of 100 microgrammes - the legal limit being 22 - on various roads in Kelso including the A698 on December 23.

The court heard that the 50-year-old made a telephone call to her estranged husband where she sounded distressed and emotional, and suggested she had damaged the car.

He visited her home and thought he could smell gas from the house and alerted police who were doing a nearby roadside check.

It transpired the smell came from the various liquids coming out of the badly damaged car.

Procurator fiscal Graham Fraser said: "The accused admitted she had crashed the car and there was an exceptionally high reading."

Defence lawyer Greg McDonnel said his client had been out for a meal but was feeling low when she got home and started to drink vodka.

She did not want to be in the house on her own and made the decision to drive to Kirk Yetholm.

He explained: "She realised she was in no fit state to drive the car and returned home and contacted her estranged husband."

Mr McDonnel pointed out the mother-of-two had held a licence for 33 years.

He asked the sheriff to take into account her previous unblemished record and that she had co-operated with the police.

Sheriff Derrick McIntyre commented: "It is a very high reading."

He told McGlasson he would have banned her for 24 months but reduced the disqualification period to 16 months due to the guilty plea.

She was certified as suitable for the Drink Driver rehabilitation Scheme which offers a 25 per cent discount on the length of the ban if successfully completed at the driver's own expense.

Not guilty pleas to failing to stop and report an accident to the police at the electricity sub station in Rosebank, Kelso, and not reporting an accident to the police within 24 hours were accepted by the Crown.