King of Excellent (according to Scaryduck)

Thursday, November 13

Advertising Road Safety

Don't worry, that's not as boring as it sounds.

As a child dragged up (kicking and screaming) in the 70s, we had two road safety advertisements. The bloke who played Darth Vader, and the red squirrel called Tufty who later became roadkill.

In the 80s Australia started to show truly horrific road safety adverts. These adverts would show the devastation caused by the accident, the loss of life, the injuries involved. It would shock you (very successfully I gather) into not speeding, or drinking and driving.

Meanwhile, in the UK we carried on with Jimmy Savile telling us "Klunk Klik, every trip." Following on from the Aussie success, we started to make adverts to compare. The most famous was the late 80s/early 90s advert "have a drink, have a drive" using the Mungo Jerry classic "in the summertime."

Staggeringly, this advert was withdrawn from the air after the ITC received complaints (!) that it was too graphic. Isn't that the point.

Coming bang up to date, and we now have another advert shocking grannies to pick up their phones and complain. That alone has led to this advert having a toned-down version for during the day, whilst the full version can only be shown after the watershed. Not wearing a seatbelt has always been a bone of contention for me. Yes, I agree that it undoubtedly saves lives wearing one, but even Stirling Moss has admitted that he'd not want to be wearing a seatbelt in certain types of crashes because he wouldn't be able to get out quickly enough. I hasten to add, I always wear a seatbelt however (something Sharon should learn) but this is because I drive a Volvo and without the seatbelt it'll nag you to death. A few years ago Ford changed their Mondeos as an experiment, and half of the things required in the car wouldn't work without the seatbelt on, like the indicators or the blowers. This was a very effective way of making people put on their seatbelts. Almost as effective as this week's video, which I personally think is superb and highlights how important a seatbelt is.

Maybe Enjoy's not the right word. "Watch and Learn" would be better.