A new Midlands-wide publicity campaign is using the Internet to remind young drivers of the responsibility they have for their passengers.
The ‘best mate’ campaign centres on a short ‘viral’ film designed to be viewed on Youtube and other social networking websites.
In the film, two beautiful bikini clad girls are enjoying themselves playing beach volleyball in remote sand dunes with a young man in his late teens. Everyone is having a great time - until suddenly the film cuts to his ‘mate’ who is perched on top of a dune in a wheelchair unable to join in - having lost a leg in a car crash.
The copy line reads: ‘You crashed the car, your mate has to live with it.’ The film ends with the line: ‘Take responsibility for your passengers’.
The campaign is based on research conducted in 2007, which showed that the outcome most young drivers dread is being responsible for a crash in which one of their passengers is killed, maimed, disabled or brain damaged.
Gemma Doyle, spokesperson for the campaign says: “It may seem unusual, perhaps even controversial, to use sexual innuendo to deliver a road safety message, but we all know how difficult it is to communicate with young people – particularly on a subject like road safety.
“We needed to push the boundaries to secure their attention - because of the content and way that the film has been shot, we think there’s a strong chance it will be widely circulated among our target audience.”
A 30-second adaptation of the film will be shown in some local cinemas and the campaign also includes billboards and other outdoor media.