What do pink kittens and distracted drivers have in common? This new government safety video highlights just how much a driver using their phone misses.
Directed by the same people who created the hit music video 'Happy' for Pharrell Williams, the new Think! road safety video is aimed at a younger audience – because 17- to 34-year-olds are three times more likely to use their phone while driving than those over 35. That’s why this campaign uses a different strategy to the typically more sobering videos.
The video begins with a two second glimpse of a busy street and then asks the viewer 'did you see the pink kitten?' When the video is played back in slow motion, it’s not just the cats you notice. The street is full of people and potential hazards. Oh, and a lady on a pink space hopper.
If you look at your phone for just over two seconds at 30mph, you’ll have covered 30 metres. That’s the length of a Boeing 737.
In March 2017 penalties for using a phone while driving doubled in a bid to discourage the dangerous behaviour. A £200 fine and six penalty points now doubles the original punishment. Get caught twice and you’ll lose your licence as well as face a £1,000 fine. If a driver with less than two years experience under their belt gets caught, they’ll lose their licence, too.
Despite these tough new punishments, over 15,000 fines have been issued since March.
Jesse Norman, road safety minister, said: 'The awful truth is that tens of thousands of drivers are still flouting the law and endangering others by using a handheld mobile phone at the wheel.'
Many smartphones now feature apps that reduce their distraction. Android’s Car Mode app and Apple’s Do Not Disturb mode deactivate messages and notifications while driving.
The new road safety video can be seen in cinemas, online and on social media. This four week campaign also includes two radio adverts – it’s a clever campaign with a serious message. Don’t use your mobile phone while driving.