The man killed in what police believe was a speeding car yesterday has been publicly identified.

Daniel Troy Leslie, aged 31, of Waipukurau was a front-seat passenger in a Holden Commodore that police say was clocked doing 124 km/h in a 50 km/h zone as it left Dannevirke.

The officer activated the police car's lights and siren and had to wait a few moments for passing traffic before a safe U-turn could be performed.

"By the time the officer had initiated the U-turn the Commodore was far out of sight. The officer has driven about 1 kilometre down the road which enters a 70 km/h zone. They have then located the vehicle which had hit a power pole on the opposite side of the road,'' said Acting Central District Commander, Inspector Pat Handcock.

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The wreckage was found at the corner of SH2 and Makirikiri Road.

Police officers and Fire Service staff gave first aid to Mr Leslie and the other two occupants, but Mr Leslie died at the scene.

The driver and other passenger sustained minor injuries and were seen to by ambulance staff.

Preliminary indications suggest speed was a factor, and the driver had failed to navigate a right hand bend in the road. Police believe alcohol may have been another factor in the crash.

"The Serious Crash Unit is continuing to investigate the crash and charges against the driver are likely. Officers are also in the process of speaking to witnesses including the driver and rear seat passenger of the Commodore,'' Inspector Handcock said.