A Swedish driver recently managed to persuade a court that although he was more than ten times over the legal alcohol limit, he had been asleep at the time and therefore not responsible for his actions.
He was found outside his car, in a ditch, in Karlsrona, Southern Sweden.
In court an expert witness statement gave the opinion that the man may have been suffering from somnambulism or sleepwalking.
"Somnambulism is a well known medical phenomenon where a person can carry out complex behaviours like walking, eating and making food, driving a car and having sex without actually being awake or aware of what's happening," the doctor stated in court documents.
The doctor stated also that the man had previously shown such sleep-related behaviour and that it may have been once again triggered by medication which he had taken on the evening of the car accident.
The court stated in its ruling that "it cannot be shown beyond a reasonable doubt" that the man "was aware of his actions when he drove his car" to the extent required to find him guilty of drink driving.
Well, now we’ve heard everything. Falling asleep at the wheel is one bad driving behaviour punishable by law, but apparently, so long as you are sleepdriving, in Sweden, you can be drunk as well.
Image © Bedzine via Flickr, under Creative Commons Licence
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