A DRINK-DRIVER involved in a crash on the M23 claimed he “should have had a bigger burger” to soak up the alcohol.

Colin Delaney, from Horsham, admitted he had consumed a couple of glasses of wine at lunch time prior to the crash just south of junction 9 near Crawley.

The 56-year-old was driving a silver Mercedes CL500 which collided with the rear of a green Ford Transit in lane three of the southbound carriageway.

Both vehicles sustained extensive damage during the crash, which took place at about 7.40pm on May 31 last year.

It caused the entire southbound carriageway to be closed for about 30 minutes while the vehicles were recovered and debris was cleared from the road.

Delaney, a director, of Hammerpond Road, Plummers Plain, failed a roadside breath test and was charged with driving with 40mcg of alcohol per 100ml of breath in his system.

Sussex Police said he showed no remorse for his actions and was more interested in finding out how far over the limit he was.

When the arresting officer advised him of the breath test reading, Delaney replied: “I should have had a bigger burger.”

He was disqualified from driving for 13 months at Horsham Magistrates’ Court on Monday.

He was also fined £300 and ordered to pay £450 costs and a £30 victim surcharge.

Arresting officer PC Brad Simms, of the Bognor Regis Response Unit, said: “Eating a bigger meal would have had a minimal impact on the breath test reading Delaney recorded.

"Instead of worrying about how close to the legal limit he was, Delaney could have guaranteed he was safe to drive by not drinking altogether.

“The effects of alcohol vary from person to person, and depend on a number of factors including age, weight, sex, metabolism, type of alcohol, what a person has eaten recently and their stress levels at the time.

“Delaney made a conscious decision to drive having consumed alcohol earlier that day.

“In doing so he not only risked being over the limit; he also risked his own life and the lives of other road users.

“Aside from being illegal, drink-driving is socially unacceptable and Sussex Police will prosecute anyone caught committing the offence.

“Our advice is simple: drink OR drive; never both.”

Residents and motorists in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug-driving, or visit the Operation Crackdown website.

Alternatively, you can visit the Crimestoppers website or contact the independent charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.