Perth: new TV safety campaign shows road toll is more than just a number

A screenshot from the TV advertisement.
A screenshot from the TV advertisement.

A POWERFUL road safety campaign launched on West Australian television screens last night, highlighting the human side of death and serious injury on our roads.

In ‘Closer to home than you think’, a man on the street (Francisco) is asked what he thinks is an acceptable number of people to die on the roads in a year, he answers 70.

Seventy members of his family walk towards him, illustrating that road crash fatalities are not just statistics, they are people who leave behind families and loved ones.

Francisco, overcome with emotion then changes acceptable number of road deaths to zero.

The behind the scenes video reveals that the television campaign did not use actors.

Francisco said he thought he was participating in an in-house training video for the TAC (Transport Accident Commission in Victoria).

“When you see your family and you link that to the road toll, it becomes very personal,” he said.

“I saw my wife and she was emotional too.”

The State Government has adopted the campaign for use after it ran successfully in Victoria and New South Wales.

Road Safety Minister Michelle Roberts said the campaign really brings home the tragic ripple effect road trauma can have on individuals and their families.

“The road toll should not be simply seen as a number, because when we’re talking about death and serious injuries on our roads, we are talking about mothers, fathers, grandparents and children,” she said.

A survey of Victorians who have viewed the campaign showed that 90 per cent believed the community should be aiming for zero lives lost on the roads.

“The advertisement is emotionally powerful, and puts a human element to the hundreds of deaths and serious injuries we hear about every year on our roads,” Ms Roberts said.

“I hope it will make people think about their driving, so that we might prevent more families experiencing the tragedy of road trauma.”

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