Speed is one of the most important factors in road trauma and may contribute to as many as 50 per cent of crashes.
Internationally acknowledged research by the Centre for Automotive Safety Research (CASR), University of Adelaide, has shown the risk of crashing and the severity of a crash increases with increases in speed. At 65km/h, the risk of crashing is double the risk at 60km/h.
Even low-level speeding is risky and this can be exacerbated in poor driving conditions. This was emphasised by the television speed campaign run in 2004, featuring Professor Ian Johnston comparing two cars travelling at 60km/h and 65 km/h and their stopping distances.
Despite this, the link between speed and the risk of crashing and the severity of injury is not well understood by the community and needs to be a feature of speed communication campaigns.
Many motorists are not aware of the reaction distance and braking distance required when speeding. For example, when the reaction distance is added to the braking distance, at 100 km/h it requires 100 meters to stop in an emergency, whereas at 120 km/h, 130 meters are needed. Like wise, many motorists are not aware of impact speed and crash energy. This means that small differences in impact speed are associated with large differences in crash energy, and correspondingly large differences in the potential to be injured in a crash.
Research has repeatedly found that young drivers (aged 16-24), particularly males, are more likely to indulge in risk taking behaviour such as speeding. National statistics show that 28 per cent of sober young drivers involved in fatal crashes were speeding or driving too fast for the road conditions, compared with 10 per cent of sober drivers aged over 25. Other research shows nearly 1/3 of passenger fatalities in the 16 - 19 age bracket result from speeding. Motorcyclist fatalities are also commonly a result of inappropriate speed.
The objective of this campaign is to reduce the incidence of speeding in South Australia, measured by a reduction in the number of serious casualty crashes attributed to speeding. This will be achieved by increasing awareness of drivers and vehicle occupants of the consequences of non-compliance in relation to speeding.
Primary audiences for communication activities associated with this campaign include:
Young Drivers (aged 16-24), particularly male
Young Passengers (aged 16-24)
Secondary audiences for the project include:
All road users aged 16+
The scheduling of the campaign outreach coincides with specific events and integrates where practicable with SAPOL enforcement operations. Some events will be supported by public relations outreach only.
6-19 November 2005 and 19 March to 2 April 2006.
2-15 October 2005, 6-19 November 2005, 19 March to 2 April 2006 and 16-30 April 2006.
Ad Shells used 2-15 October 2005, 6-19 November 2005, 19 March to 2 April 2006, 16-30 April 2006.
Mobile Road Signage
A Frame/Speed Trailers used 4-15 October 2005, 17-29 November 2005, 19 March to 2 April 2006.
Regional Banner Network used 2 October 2005 to 3 December 2005, 19 March to 30 April 2006.
The outreach tools for this campaign explain that there is no excuse for speeding and that even driving a little bit over the speed limit is dangerous.
'Excuses' Television Commercial
The Excuses television commercial begins with a young girl walking her dog along the path in 60km speed limit zone. The dog escapes from her grip and runs across the road and the girl chases the dog across the road without looking. The driver of the vehicle, who is speeding by only a small amount (5kms), fails to stop in time and hit the young girl. At the point of the driver first sighting the young girl, the footage goes into slow motion. The voice over then has four different people who are interpreted as having been driving the car, giving excuses for why they were speeding. Excuses include "I was only over the limit by a few k's," "the shop was going to close in 10 minutes," "I was running late for work" and "The guy going in front was going just as fast as I was." The key slogan and end tag of the TV commercial is Speeding. What's Your Excuse? Stop. Think.
Excuses Radio Commercial
There are a series of six radio commercials which support the message of television commercial that there is no excuse for speeding. Each radio commercial depicts a different situation in which unforeseen road hazards lead to unavoidable crashes due to drivers exceeding the speed limit. Once again, a variety of excuses for speeding are heard with the voice over concluding with Speeding. What's Your Excuse? The Government of South Australia and the Motor Accident Commission ask you to Stop.Think.