The month-long awareness campaign features a hearse with the chilling message: “Arshad didn’t like wearing his seatbelt. Now he doesn’t have to. Belt up and LIVE WITH IT!”
The advert has been produced by Manchester City Council, together with Bradford, Kirklees, Middlesbrough, Oldham and Rochdale. Its aim is to reduce road casualties by encouraging everyone to wear seatbelts, every time they get into a car.
Even among those who agree it is necessary to wear a belt in the front seat, many feel it is unnecessary to wear rear seatbelts. It is a grim fact, however, that passengers not wearing a seatbelt or using a child restraint are three times as likely to suffer death or serious injury as those who do.
The ethnic communities have been identified as being particularly vulnerable and a special effort is being made to target them. The new bus back advert has been produced particularly with them in mind.
Councillor Afzal Khan, Manchester City Council’s lead member for race equality, said: “This is obviously an issue which affects all motorists, but there is evidence that it’s a matter for particular concern in the Asian communities. That’s why we are addressing it through this campaign, by targeting minority ethnic groups directly.
“Parents need to get into the habit of wearing their own belts and securing their children safely in both the front and back of the car. The reality of being involved in a crash is terrifying. It takes less than a fifth of a second for an unrestrained child to fly through a windscreen and die in a crash, when the car is travelling at only 30 mph.
“Our children rely on us to protect them and this campaign is designed to inform, educate and encourage adults to take responsibility for themselves and those around them.”