THE driver who ploughed his car into an Ipswich convenience store while drunk and left almost $13,000 damage must pay to fix up the mess.
Adam Edward Land, 35, left a trail of destruction which ended in the front wall of an Ipswich convenience store in the early hours of July 21.
Ipswich Magistrates Court heard Land dropped his phone and had bent down to pick it up when he lost control of the car.
After crashing through a set of traffic lights at the intersection of Warwick Rd and Moffatt St just after 3am, his car slammed into the Four Square store.
The impact demolished the cement besser block wall and left a gaping hole in the store, which was empty at the time.
When police arrived witnesses said they had seen Land and another man run off.
The dog squad found the pair in Lion St a short time later.
Land was unable to give a sample of breath and was blood tested at the Ipswich Hospital.
The father of three returned a reading of 0.140 - almost three times the legal limit.
The court heard it had cost Ipswich City Council $4000 to repair the traffic lights and the store sustained $8634 in damage and lost stock.
Land yesterday pleaded guilty to drink-driving and failing to remain at the scene of an accident.
He was fined $800, disqualified from driving for five months and ordered to pay $12,634 restitution.
Defence lawyer David Love said before the accident Land had been asleep after a few drinks, but was woken by a call from a distressed friend asking for help.
Despite feeling a bit groggy, Land picked his friend up and the pair went to McDonald's.
Land was then taking the friend home when he dropped his phone and the accident happened.
Mr Love said Land, a roofer, had fallen from the roof of a job a couple of weeks before the crash and broken a few ribs.
He said the accident aggravated the previous injury and the only reason Land left the scene was to try to make it to Ipswich Hospital for treatment. Land's car, on which he still owed $20,000, was written off in the accident.
Magistrate Donna MacCallum said Land's behaviour had been "an expensive exercise" for him.
"This was a significant incident with significant damage to property," Ms MacCallum said.
The store has been temporarily boarded up for repairs.