A DRINK-driver who was found to be nearly twice the legal alcohol limit said he had gone out in his car to 'clear his head'.

The sheriff court heard that Craig Strachan, 32, got behind the wheel at around 9pm after drinking 'much earlier' and thought that he was no longer under the effects of booze.

But a police breathalyser reading revealed that he had 38 micrograms of alcohol in 100 millilitres of breath — putting him well over the legal limit of 22mcg.

Prosecutor Pamela Brady said: "The accused was driving the vehicle on Inverkip Road towards the junction with Cumberland Road and was reported due to the manner of his driving.

"Police traced the vehicle and the accused at his home.

"The accused opened the door and he immediately appeared to be intoxicated.

"He confirmed that he'd driven the car at the time and place described by the police.

"He indicated that he had drank earlier in the day."

Strachan, of Weir Street in Greenock, committed the offence on February 12.

His two brothers had passed away in quick succession and his mother has dementia, defence lawyer Aidan Gallagher told the court.

Mr Gallagher said: "He has a limited offending history with two non-analogous matters dating back to the early 2000s.

"He was drinking much earlier in the day and he thought by 9pm he would be fit enough.

"He says he went out in the car to clear his head and gather his thoughts."

Sheriff Daniel Kelly imposed a £370 fine and banned Strachan from driving for 12 months.

However, the sheriff gave him the option of a drink-driver rehabilitation course which will reduce the length of the disqualification period to nine months if successfully completed.