Fined $400, driving ban

A tourist, whose driving near Queenstown last Sunday was so bad another motorist rang the police, admitted a charge of dangerous driving yesterday and paid his $400 fine the same day.

In the Invercargill District Court, Judge Michael Turner ordered Naranwita Rathnaweera (32), a Sri Lankan living in Australia, to pay his fine before 4pm, and disqualified him from driving in New Zealand for six months.

The police summary of facts said Rathnaweera was driving through the Devil's Staircase towards Queenstown about 7.15pm when other motorists saw his Toyota car cross the centre line at almost every right-hand corner.

They estimated his vehicle was three-quarters to fully on the incorrect side of the road at those corners.

A following motorist phoned the police and Rathnaweera was stopped by a police patrol in Frankton Rd, on the outskirts of Queenstown.

He told police he might have crossed the centre line but was unable to remember if he had done that, or how many times.