A Gold Coast woman has set an unwanted Queensland record for drink-driving, registering a reading more than eight times the legal limit.

Janet Sarah Waterhouse fronted Southport Magistrates Court on Tuesday, pleading guilty to high-range drink-driving, after blowng 0.425 per cent.

Ms Waterhouse admitted to drinking half a litre of vodka on May 10 last year, before driving to her local liquor store to buy more alcohol at around noon the next day.

Fellow shoppers noticed the woman's erratic behaviour as she was driving off, called in her number plate to police, who tracked Ms Waterhouse down at her Ridgeway Avenue home.

Police then breath-tested Waterhouse at 1:35pm. Forensic experts calculated her reading would have been five to six times the legal limit despite blowing 0.425 per cent.

Police can legally test people for suspected drunkeness up to three hours after an offence has been committed.

Waterhouse consumed another 500mL of vodka before police arrived, according to her solicitor Mark Bamberry.

He said Waterhouse had suffered indecent assaults at the hands of her former childhood swimming coach.

"She was drowning her sorrows with alcohol," he said

Magistrate John Costanzo imposed a probation term, counselling and driving courses to better educate Waterhosue.

"Anyone driving with that amount of alcohol in their system is simply a risk to themselves, every road user and member of the public in the vicinity," he said.

"It was simply good luck and not good management that you didn't have a serious accident or kill someone."

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