Man fined for driving fake ambulance to avoid traffic

The man sped through the Tyne Tunnel with his blue lights flashing

              Shocking footage: Man speeds through traffic in fake ambulance

A driver who fitted his car with blue lights and a siren in a bid to turn the vehicle into a fake ambulance has appeared in court.

Shaun Scandle, 31, was handed a fine of more than £1,000 and nine points on his licence when he appeared at North Shields Magistrates Court following the incident on 9 September.

See also: Pensioner drives five miles the wrong way down M60

See also: Moment car flips through air caught on dashcam in Wales

Northumbria Police were called by staff at the Tyne Tunnel who were concerned at the speed the vehicle was travelling through the rush hour traffic.

Officers made enquiries with the North East Ambulance Service who said they had no record of one of their vehicles being in the area at the time.

An investigation was launched and, following close partnership work between the police, NEAS and tunnel operator TT2 Limited, Scandle was identified as the driver.

Officers visited Scandle and found his white Renault Megane had been covered in livery to make it look like a rapid response vehicle.

They also discovered he ran a business called Hadrian Medical Services offering first aid at events across the North East for which he used the vehicle.

On this occasion he had been providing first aid for the Tour of Britain cycle race and had been travelling to Blyth to attend a medical incident he had been called to.

Scandle, of Priestpopple, Hexham, was summonsed to court for careless driving and on Friday, 24 June, he changed his plea to guilty to escape a lengthy driving ban.

The judge sitting on the case also approved an application by Northumbria Police to destroy the equipment he used to create his fake ambulance.

A/Sgt Alan Keenleyside, of the Operations Department, said: "This may seem like a bizarre story but the reality is Mr Scandle was putting lives at risk through his behaviour on the road.

"Those working in the emergency services receive specialist training to drive our response vehicles and the public should not try and take that responsibility into their own hands.

"Mr Scandle is lucky that he did not receive a driving ban but hopefully he will think twice about his behaviour on the roads following his sentence at court.

"The emergency services do an incredibly difficult job to protect everyone in this region. It is something we are proud to do and those in our communities should leave it to the professionals."

Britain's deadliest roads

Britain's deadliest roads