A forceful new campaign has been launched warning Lanarkshire drivers that not wearing a seatbelt could cost them their lives.
On television, cinema, radio, digital channels and outdoors, a new ad features a car with a crash test dummy, without a seat belt, in the driver’s seat.
As the car begins to drive into a wall, the camera pans away from the impact and focuses on the effects on the driver’s family as they deal with their grief.
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The safety campaign, led by the Scottish Government and Road Safety Scotland, also focuses on the devastating impact on loved ones left behind.
A family of crash test dummies are seen sitting at a table with an empty seat poignantly left for their missing family member as the final line appears: “It’s not just you who gets hurt.” Use the security belt.’
Seat belt use reduces fatal and non-fatal injuries by 60% among front seat passengers and 44% among rear seat passengers.
Superintendent Simon Bradshaw, deputy chief of highway police, said: “Wearing a seat belt is not an option, it is the law and the evidence is clear that seat belts save lives – it’s not just you who can get hurt if you don’t.” .
“Our officers will engage and educate drivers and passengers where necessary, but we will also continue to take appropriate enforcement action and those caught not wearing a seatbelt could be fined up to £500.
“We also remind drivers that it is their responsibility to ensure that all passengers under the age of 14 are wearing their seat belts, and they can be ticketed for each child not properly restrained.”
Transport Minister Graeme Dey said: “The consequences of not wearing a seatbelt can be devastating if a collision occurs, not only for the driver and passengers, but also for others, including their loved ones.”
“This campaign sends a clear but necessary message to anyone who travels by car: it’s not just you who gets hurt. Wear your seatbelt on every trip.
Figures show that, on average, 13 per cent of people killed on Scotland’s roads over the past five years were not wearing a seat belt.
And only three-quarters of drivers considered not wearing a seat belt “very serious,” far below the 93 percent who considered driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs “very serious.”
The campaign and advert are live now and can be viewed on Road Safety Scotland’s Facebook and Twitter pages using the hashtag @RoadSafetyScot.
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George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.