Backseat driver: NZTA gives unwilling speeders a voice

  • Advertising
  • May 28, 2019
  • StopPress Team
Backseat driver: NZTA gives unwilling speeders a voice

At any one time in New Zealand, there are hundreds of people speeding in cars who don't want to be. In a new campaign, NZTA and Clemenger BBDO shine a light on who has to cope with the consequences of losing control of a car at high speed – and it's not just the driver.

The scene is a surprisingly common one, passengers unwilling to speak up or assert their right to choose their risk, in fear of being shut down by the driver. Many of these 'unwilling speeders' stay silent, and their reluctance to travel at speed is left unnoticed. 

The launch film features people sitting in cars being driven at speed, but without a visible driver. By removing the drivers from the vehicles altogether, the viewer is left faced with the discomfort their speed induces in their passengers. 

NZTA and Clemenger BBDO have launched a new campaign giving these passengers a voice. 'Your Speed is Shared' asks the drivers to reconsider their right to dictate speed for others. 

NZTA principal advisor advertising Rachel Prince says the timing was right to raise awareness of this issue. 

"With our social norm of the driver having exclusive say on their speed, passengers who want to slow down feel unreasonable, unjustified and alone. But for every speeder, there's potentially a passenger feeling extremely vulnerable."

Clemenger BBDO ECD Brigid Alkema says the campaign raises important questions people might not think to ask.

"Does the driver's right to determine their speed overrule the passenger's right to feel safe? And can we create an environment where if passengers speak up, it actually works?"

Along with the launch film, the campaign also includes a series of supporting videos featuring 'unwilling speeders', workmates, friends, daughters and partners of drivers, talking about their experiences in a speeding car. 

A series of billboards are also being rolled out as part of the campaign. They feature the passengers and bearing the simple message 'Slow Me Down', 


Client: NZ Transport Agency
Agency: Clemenger BBDO​
Production Company: FINCH
Director: Jae Morrison
Media Agency: OMD

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  • Advertising
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  • StopPress Team
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