A dangerous driver has been given an 18-week suspended prison sentence and a 2-year driving ban after posting a video of himself driving at 149mph, before almost losing control of his vehicle.
Aaron Duffy, a 29-year-old man from Bridgend, posted the video on his Instagram story in July 2022, whilst speeding along the M4 in a Mercedes. The short video zooms in on the speedometer, as he accelerates to speeds of 149mph whilst filming. He then pans around to show a young dog laying on the passenger seat. The video is captioned ‘puppy hit his first 150mph today’.
A concerned member of the public sent the footage to GoSafe through Operation Snap and an investigation started. The investigating officer identified that the vehicle belonged to Duffy. Landmarks taken from the footage were then overlayed on to police systems to determine the location of the offence, before CCTV was sought from Traffic Wales.
The CCTV showed Mr Duffy travelling at high speed around Junction 36 and 37 of the M4. It also shows him almost losing control of his vehicle when it crosses the solid white line towards the central reservation, kicking up a cloud of dust and debris.
In order to corroborate the speed shown by Duffy, an expert witness was supplied with the data to perform speed calculations from footage. This confirmed that Mr Duffy’s vehicle was travelling well in excess of the speed limit, at approximately 140-150mph.
Mr Duffy was interviewed and admitted the offence, before pleading guilty to dangerous driving.
He appeared in Cardiff Magistrates Court on Thursday, 2nd February 2023. He received an 18-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, a two-year driving ban with an extended re-test, rehabilitation activity, and was made to pay a £154 victim surcharge and £85 court costs.
Investigating Officer PC 4332 Simmonds said:
“Speeding and using a mobile phone whilst driving are two major contributors to road collisions. Combining these two actions puts every person on the road in danger and could have led to a devastating impact on themselves and their families. This incident, and the investigation work that followed it, is a great example of how we can work with the public to keep our roads safer.”
If you have witnessed dangerous driving or other driving offences on the road, you can submit photographic and video evidence to GoSafe at Operation SNAP (gosafesnap.wales)