A Kaikohe photographer managed to capture the dramatic split-second moment when police road spikes shredded the tyres of a fleeing unlicensed driver.

Incidentally, Debbie Beadle had forgotten to bring her camera - she rarely leaves home without it - when she took her husband to Kerikeri for a medical appointment.

As they passed through Ohaeawai on the way home, they saw several police cars and a highway patrol officer getting ready to deploy spikes, which are designed to puncture tyres when drivers refuse to stop.

Only when they stopped, did Beadle realise she had left her camera at home so she had to make do with her phone as she watched a silver Holden approaching at high speed, the driver braking heavily when he saw the spikes.


Her photo captures the instant Sergeant Tony Dunckley flicks road spikes into the vehicle's path and the shredded tyres billow smoke and powder.

The car continued a short distance before the 16-year-old driver tried to run away, sparking a short foot chase.

The chase started about 1.30pm on May 3 when police recognised the boy behind the wheel as an unlicensed driver.

He took off, clipping a car at the intersection of SH12 and Rankin Rd, then leading police towards Ohaeawai at speeds of up to 130km/h with two young passengers on board.

While the youth was the owner of the car, it was deregistered and carrying plates from another vehicle.

He appeared in the Kaikohe Youth Court on Monday charged with dangerous driving, failing to stop, driving without a licence, and failing to comply with a prohibition.

His Holden was impounded for 28 days. He is due back in court on June 7.