A police driver had to swerve onto the wrong side of the road to avoid colliding head-on with an oncoming car, the driver of which was nearly three-and-a-half times the drink-drive limit.
The marked police car was responding to an emergency call in the early hours - and had its sirens and lights on - when the driver was confronted by an approaching Volvo and had to take evasive action, a court heard.
Prosecutor Baldev Atwal said the police vehicle was travelling at 50mph along Dunchurch Road in Rugby when the Volvo S60 approached from the other direction on the wrong side of the road.
To avoid a collision the police car driver swerved onto the wrong side of the road, into an unoccupied on-coming lane.
His vehicle turned round and caught up with the Volvo driver and stopped him shortly afterwards.
“It was obvious he was under the influence of alcohol and he was fairly oblivious to the officers,” added the prosecutor.
Lumir Klimes, of Clifton Road, Rugby, appeared before Nuneaton magistrates for sentence on Tuesday (December 10) after previously admitting dangerous driving and driving with excess alcohol on Dunchurch Road on October 27.
A test showed he had 120 microgrammes of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath. The legal limit is 35mc.
The case had previously been adjourned for a pre-sentence probation report.
Forty-four-year-old Klimes, who had a full clean driving licence, was helped in court by an interpreter.
He said: “I am really sorry and won’t do it again.”
Sentencing, presiding magistrate Colin Hayfield told him: “Because this was your first offence and you only just come into the custody bracket, we are not going to send you to prison today.”
Klimes was given a 12-month community order, with 250 hours’ unpaid work, disqualified from driving for three years, and fined £400 with £40 victim surcharge and £85 prosecution costs.
If he completes a drink-driver rehabilitation course by February 1 2016, the driving ban will be reduced by 36 weeks but, because of the dangerous driving offence, he must also re-take a driving test before his licence is returned.