“Congratulations, today I got a big fine,” reads the caption of Alexander Tikhomirov’s Instagram post showing his jeep stuck in the clay in North Iceland. The Russian man shared pictures of himself posing and smiling in front of the vehicle after he was fined for illegal off-road driving near Mývatn. Mbl.is reported first.
Icelanders have expressed outrage at Tikhomirov’s apparent lack of respect for Iceland’s fragile nature as well as its laws. “Please never return to Iceland,” one comment on the post reads. Another user writes: “This is incredibly disrespectful, after you got fined by the police for banned offroad driving you pose by the rental car at the scene. Shame on you.”
Off-road driving is illegal in Iceland, as the sub-arctic landscape is easily damaged and takes decades to recover. Witnesses who saw the incident take place yesterday notified Northeast Iceland Police. Officers completed an investigation before Tikhomirov’s vehicle was towed out of the soft clay-rich soil where it had gotten stuck. Tikhomirov paid an ISK 450,000 ($3,600/€3,200) fine for the incident this morning in Akureyri.
The Instagram personality seems to have little understanding of locals’ reactions. He shared some comments criticising him in an Instagram story yesterday, writing “why you guys so angry.” Tikhomorov’s account, which shares photos of travel destinations and scantily-clad women, has over 300,000 followers.