A recidivist drunk-driver who racked up his ninth conviction after he was seen doing a burnout by a Tauranga City Council CCTV operator has narrowly avoided prison.

Andrew Lloyd Boyes, 43, who appeared in the Tauranga District Court on Thursday, was sentenced to 12 months' home detention and disqualified from driving for seven months.

After that period of disqualification, Boyes would also be required to have a zero alcohol interlock device attached to his vehicle for a further six months.

Boyes earlier pleaded guilty to two driving charges.

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That was one charge each of operating a motor vehicle causing sustained loss of traction, and driving with excess breath alcohol being a third or subsequent offence.

Boyes, who had eight prior convictions for alcohol or drug-impaired driving, was seen driving a Ford vehicle in Hamilton St in the early hours of February 28.

He accelerated heavily, causing the vehicle to spin for about three seconds, and the rear end began to fishtail as Boyes travelled up Hamilton St, the court heard.

After turning into Willow St, Boyes drove on the wrong side of the road for about 50m, and his actions were seen by Tauranga City Council's CCTV camera operator.

Police located Boyes sitting in the vehicle parked on Devonport Rd.

He refused to undergo a compulsory breath screening test, and accompany the attending police officer back to the police station, and was aggressive towards the officer.

A subsequent test confirmed Boyes had been driving with excess breath alcohol level of 967 micrograms of alcohol per litre of breath - the adult legal limit was 250mcg.

In explanation, Boyes told police he had only had "a few beers".

Lawyer Jason Owers told Judge Thomas Ingram that Boyes had been struggling with some "very difficult" personal circumstances and "was in a bad head space".

Boyes was different man six months on, and he had undertaken counselling and had the strong support from a local church to help him make positive changes in his life, he said.

Judge Ingram said Boyes had a "long and bad" drink-driving record over 20 years, but given the rehabilitative steps he had made, he was prepared to grant home detention.

"If I was sending you to prison today, it would have to be for at least two years."