Since the inception of the Stop DWI program in New York State 30 years ago, drunk driving fatalities have gone down by more than 50 percent, but officials want that number to decrease even more. As YNN's Chris Whalen tells us, a new, graphic ad campaign is the latest in a push to end impaired driving.
VESTAL, N.Y. -- It's many people's worst nightmare: pulling up to the scene of an accident to find someone they love inside the vehicle.
Luckily a scene off the Vestal Parkway Thursday was actually a scene from a new commercial set to air this summer.
"The new theory of traffic safety issues is really high-impact, graphic, real commercials that grab the attention of the viewer," said Jim May of James F. May Management & Consulting.
The plot behind this ad involves a decision producers say happens all too often.
"Our commercial opens inside a bar and we see our drinker finishing up a beer and reaching for his car keys," said Elin Barton of White Knight Productions.
What ensues is a situation that is meant to resonate with viewers.
"We see a woman in a bedroom getting a horrible phone call that her husband has been injured, we cut to a hospital scene, we cut to a jail, all these terrible, terrible things, the accident scene you're seeing behind us here," Barton said.
The style of the ad is taken from similar spots that air in the UK and Australia. Producers say the graphic nature is the only way to drive the message home.
"We're hoping that people will see this commercial and want to change the station, we're really hoping to have an emotional impact," Barton said.
An impact that will result in more people making the right decision.
"Find a ride, call a cab, it's not worth it. It's not worth messing somebody else's life up, it's definitely not worth messing your own life up," said actor Dylan Ruffo.
The PSA is expected to hit the airwaves by early June.