Video shows driver inhaling laughing gas and using phone before crashing and killing teenager

  • Watch as Cameron Hughes is videoed inhaling laughing gas and using his phone before crashing through a barrier. Caution, footage shows scenes some viewers may find distressing.

A delivery driver killed his teenage passenger after inhaling laughing gas and using Snapchat at the wheel before driving his van off a bridge.

Footage shows Cameron Hughes, 24, using a balloon to take the gas just moments before crashing his van through a metal barrier on 7 July 2023 in Lancashire.

His passenger, Bonney Rae Barrow, 15, suffered catastrophic injuries and died at Wythenshawe Hospital in Manchester the following day.

Hughes was driving his Mercedes Sprinter van at an 'inappropriate speed' of up to 68mph on the A56 Accrington Bypass at the junction with Burnley Road in Huncoat - which is a 60mph zone.

Police said during the 35-minute journey Hughes also had "numerous close calls with other vehicles" also driving on to the hard shoulder, straddling between lanes and bouncing his van off a kerb.

Cameron Hughes, 24, was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in prison and banned from driving for eight years. Credit: MEN Media

Hughes, of Haddington Drive in North Manchester, failed to navigate a left hand bend and slammed his van into a parapet over a dirt track.

The van came off the bridge and crashed to the ground below, throwing Bonney towards the windscreen.

Neither Hughes or Bonney were wearing seatbelts at the time of the incident, the court heard.

He was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years in jail and banned from driving for eight years nine months after pleading guilty to causing death by dangerous driving at Preston Crown Court.

The court heard Hughes was a close family friend, describing Bonney as his 'cousin'.

Bonney Rae Barrow was a "much-loved bubbly teenager". Credit: Lancashire Police

Bonney's mum Sarah Barrow read a statement at the hearing, she said: "Part of my heart stopped beating the day Bonnie's heart stopped beating.

“Bonny was an amazing daughter who was kind, loving and always wanted to spend time with her family and friends.

"She loved doing all the things that teenagers do especially dancing, singing, shopping and making TikTok videos that we treasure."

She continued: “We cherish the memories of her and the joy she brought us for the 15 years that she was in our lives. We all miss her so much and would do anything to have her back.  

 “Cameron had one job that day – to get Bonny home to us safely. But he made dangerous choices that led to her death and cost us the chance to watch her fully blossom in to the beautiful young woman she was becoming.  

 “Bonny – I am so proud to be your mum. The love and laughter that you bought in to our lives can never be replaced.

"And even though we are now apart, my hand is always held out if you ever need to hold it.”

She added that Hughes and Bonney had a 'close bond' which was 'full of laughter'.

Bonney's family walked out of the courtroom on Monday 30 October as Hughes was jailed.

Bonney Rae Barrow, 15, suffered catastrophic injuries in the crash and died the following day. Credit: MEN Media

Sentencing, Judge Heather Lloyd said: “This was quite a shocking piece of driving and a young 15-year-old life has been needlessly wiped out. 

"It is a miracle that no other person was wiped out, including yourself.

"This was a tragedy waiting to happen.”

Posting the footage to social media, Lancashire Police said Bonney's life had been "brutally cut short".

The force said: "Bonney Barrow was a much-loved, bubbly 15-year-old schoolgirl who had her whole life ahead of her - she loved singing and dancing and making TikTok videos, just like any other teenage girl.

"But her young life was brutally cut short when driver Cameron Hughes crashed the van she was a passenger in and killed her.

Hughes was driving 68mph in the 60mph zone. Credit: MEN Media

They added: "Hughes high on nitrous oxide and on his mobile phone during the tragic journey on July 7, failed to negotiate a left-hand bend on the slip road of the A56 at Huncoat.

"His Mercedes Sprinter van plunged five metres into the ravine below.

"Bonny suffered serious injuries and very sadly, and despite the best efforts of medical staff, died the next day at Wythenshawe Hospital."

On 8 November 2023, nitrous oxide will become a controlled Class C drug under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971.

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