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Trucker watched show while driving

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A lorry driver has been banned from driving for 15 months after he was spotted veering across motorway lanes while watching episodes of Battlestar Galactica in his 38-tonne truck.

Sci-fi fan Benjamin Trotman, 37, was watching the cult TV series through a 14-inch laptop on his dashboard, Penrith Magistrates' Court was told.

The father of two motored along at 55mph for 25 miles on the M6 in Cumbria, veering from the hard shoulder to the middle lane, slowing down and speeding up as he followed the action, magistrates heard.

Another trucker, who could see his cab lit up and figures acting on the screen, sounded his horn before calling police.

A traffic officer pulled Mr Trotman over and found a laptop running on his dashboard with Battlestar Galactica on it, the court was told.

Mr Trotman, of Bridgnorth, Shropshire, pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing to dangerous driving on the M6 near Kendal in December last year.

He was banned from the road for 15 months, given 225 hours' community service and ordered to pay £546 costs.

Chairman of the bench John Findlay JP said: "You were so distracted by what you were watching, that your driving fell far below the standard expected of a professional driver.

"Your driving was criminally irresponsible and could have had appalling consequences."

© The Press Association 2008