Gordon Dyche jailed for careless driving following fatal crash

A 24-year-old man has been jailed for four years after his careless driving caused a crash that killed four members of the same family.

Gordon Dyche, of Llanbrynmair in Powys, was trying to overtake two vehicles near the Llyn Clywedog reservoir in April last year.

Gordon Dyche
Gordon Dyche has been jailed for four years for careless driving Credit: Dyfed-Powys Police

His car clipped one of the vehicles, driven by 55-year-old Denise Griffith, sending into the water. She survived, but her mother, husband and two foster sons died.

Dyche was found guilty of causing the four deaths by careless driving but cleared of causing death by dangerous driving.

He will be banned from driving for a further four years on his release from prison.

Dyche, who had denied all the charges, had previously said he was satisfied that it was safe to overtake.

55-year-old Denise Griffith and the family's pet dog Milly were the only survivors of the crash in April last year Credit: ITV News Wales

Mrs Griffith told Caernarfon Crown Court there was a shunt, describing how she could see rocks, then sky, then rocks again as the car turned over several times and spun down the bank.

She said: "I remember thinking, how long did I have to live? I couldn't undo my seatbelt - it felt like ages. I was taking in water.

“Then the Lord came to help me get out of the window and come to the surface.

"I knew the others hadn't got out."

Mrs Griffith said at times she had wondered if she were to blame for the deaths - but an eyewitness had described her driving as 'exemplary'.

She also spoke of how her life after the tragedy was 'the most lonely, lonely place to be'.

Following today's sentencing, Mrs Griffith - through a family liaison officer - thanked those who have assisted her during 'the worst time of her life'.

Judge Niclas Parry at Caernarfon Crown Court described the case as “harrowing, tragic and difficult.”

A Dyfed Powys Police spokesperson said they welcomed today's verdict and hoped it would bring some closure to Mrs Griffith.

This was an extremely tragic accident which has deprived a woman of her family and loved ones. Nothing can begin to compensate for that loss. But as a police service we welcome today’s verdict. Hopefully, today’s verdict can bring some closure for Mrs Griffith and her family. Our thoughts and sympathies are with her and we hope she can now be left to grieve her loss in private.”

– Inspector Mark Davies