A hapless French driver became an inadvertent speed demon when his car malfunctioned and refused to slow down for nearly an hour.

Frank Lecerf was on his way to the supermarket when he noticed that the brakes in his Renault Laguna III were no longer functioning.

Worse still, hitting them would cause the vehicle to accelerate.

In short order, Lecerf found himself hurling down the highway at 200KM/h (125mph), with no way to slow down or stop.

The 36-year-old immediately phoned emergency services to explain the situation, and was hooked up with a massive police escort to ensure that other motorists got out of the way.

Three toll booths were also alerted in advance so they could lift their gates and let Lecerf barrel through.

A Renault technician was patched through to Lecerf's phone and attempted to figured out the problem, but to no avail.

By the time he ran out of gas, Lecerf had traveled 180 KM (111 miles), and crossed the border into Belgium. It was near the Belgian town of Alveringem that he was finally able to bring the car to a halt inside a ditch.

He sustained no physical injuries, but was hospitalized after suffering two epileptic seizures.

"My life flashed before me," Lecerf told Le Courrier picard. "I just wanted it to stop."

In addition to having a standard keyless ignition, Lecerf's Renault Laguna had also been adapted for his disability, with the brake and gas pedals being removed in favor of a wheel-based control system.

Lecerf says the speed dial had failed before, but Renault inspected the car and gave it a passing grade.

An investigation into the exact cause of the malfunction is ongoing, but Lecerf is already planning to sue to company for "endangerment of a person's life."

[H/T: The Atlantic, photo via Shutterstock, map via Le Figaro]