A DRIVER who claimed he drank a bottle of vodka after crashing in a Herefordshire town has been banned from the roads.

Maciej Romanko admitted failing to provide a breath specimen to police and failing to stop after a crash when he appeared before magistrates in Hereford.

Police were called to Leominster's Bridge Street after Romanko crashed his Ford Mondeo into parked cars before driving off on April 11, prosecutor Ralph Robyns Landricombe said.

Officers found the car parked on Ridgemoor Road with considerable damage to it, and enquiries established the car belonged to Romanko, who refused to tell them where he was when they called him.

The 39-year-old was found inside his Ridgemoor Road home, and was taken into custody, where he was asked to provide an evidential breath sample.

But Romanko refused, claiming that someone had taken his car and telling police he had cancer when he was asked for a medical reason as to why he could not provide a sample.

The court heard from a probation report that Romanko had been to a friend's house that day.

"He claims to have had just one beer there," the report said.

"He says he was not intoxicated but may have been distracted when the crash happened in Bridge Street. He says he was in shock and not thinking straight after the crash and grabbed a bottle of vodka and drank it before the police contacted him."

Romanko was handed a 12-month community order and must complete 120 hours of unpaid work. He was disqualified from driving for 20 months and must pay costs of £135 and a £95 victim surcharge.