Clonmel student writes script for hard-hitting road safety film

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) and Setanta Insurance Services Limited have launched a new road safety online short film called ‘Loaded Weapon’ on YouTube, which uses the metaphor of a loaded gun to illustrate the often reckless and irresponsible behaviour of young drivers. The film has already been viewed on YouTube almost 24,000 times.

The Road Safety Authority (RSA) and Setanta Insurance Services Limited have launched a new road safety online short film called ‘Loaded Weapon’ on YouTube, which uses the metaphor of a loaded gun to illustrate the often reckless and irresponsible behaviour of young drivers. The film has already been viewed on YouTube almost 24,000 times.

The script for ‘Loaded Weapon’ was developed by Clonmel man Richard Lahart, an undergraduate science student in University College Cork (UCC), and was the winning entry in the RSA and Setanta Insurance’s road safety competition, ‘Keep Drama off the Roads’.

The action in Richard’s script focuses on a group of young male friends as they go for a drive at night. Slowly, and ominously, it begins to become clear that their behaviour in the car is very reckless and that every time the young men do something reckless - almost hitting a cyclist, going too fast or unbuckling their seat belt - a gun is revealed. The film ends with a crash accompanied by a gunshot. Through the use of gun imagery, the message is very clear: “Your car is a loaded weapon. And everyone in it has their finger on the trigger.”

The film reminds us of the potentially fatal consequences of driving a car, and asks us to treat driving with the respect it deserves. But it also tells us that keeping our roads safe is a responsibility each and every one of us shares, including passengers.

Noel Brett Chief Executive, Road Safety Authority said: “It’s a sad fact but young people, particularly young males, are most at risk of dying on our roads. We wanted to come up with a new way of getting into the minds of this vulnerable group of road-users, using a medium with which they are familiar and in a way that will get their attention. What’s unique about this film is that it was developed from an idea a young student came up with to tackle the culture of speed and dangerous driving among his peers.”

The short film ‘Loaded Weapon’ is currently being shown on YouTube at the following link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3M2A56vvTk4