A Horley taxi driver has been banned from the road after he was stopped for speeding while almost twice the drink-drive limit.

Gary Verlander, 53, was pulled over by a police patrol after being caught travelling at 89mph at Junction 10a of the M23.

He told the officers who stopped him on June 27 at 11am that he was using his Vauxhall Astra to transport a piece of medical equipment to Spire Gatwick Park Hospital in Horley.

When he was breathalysed, the reading gave him 68 microgrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of his breath. The legal limit is 35 microgrammes.

Verlander, of Riverside, Horley, pleaded guilty to drink-driving at Crawley Magistrates' Court last Thursday (July 17), and was banned from driving for 17 months. He was also ordered to pay a £100 fine and a £20 victim surcharge.

Sergeant Carl Knapp of Sussex Police, said: "Verlander is a professional driver, so being banned from the roads could have a real impact on his life.”

Sgt Knapp said: "There is no excuse for driving while under the influence of drink or drugs. “We won't tolerate it and the courts have shown that just because you use your car for work, they will not let people get away with it either.

"There is a hardcore of people who continue to put themselves and others at risk by driving when they are in no fit state to, and we will do all we can to get them off the roads to keep people safe."

People in Sussex can text officers on 65999 with the details of people they suspect of drink or drug driving, or visit: www.operationcrackdown.co.uk If you know someone is driving while over the limit, or after taking drugs, call 999.