Ads Aim to Curb Drinking and Driving

Ads Aim to Curb Drinking and Driving

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Kim Johnson Reporting With New Year's celebrations coming up, the familiar slogan, "friends don't let friends drive drunk" is being expanded. The Ad Council and the National Highway Traffic and Safety administration has a new slogan to curb drinking and driving.

A cyclist struck and killed by a suspected drunk driver in Charlotte, North Carolina on Monday became one of hundreds of alleged alcohol related fatalities this holiday season. In an effort to stop drunk driving, this old familiar ad campaign for more than two decades helped drive home the point.

The ad council and national highway traffic safety administration say for twenty years the slogan contributed to major reductions in alcohol related crashes, but in the last two years the trend has changed.

Marilena Amoni, Natl. Hwy. Traffic Safety Admin: "We found that young men, primarily between the ages of 21 and 34, had a big increase in drunk driving related crashes, so we needed to take look at the message that would resonate with them."

As the new year approaches, when drunk driving fatalities are highest, they're launching a new campaign.

Marilena Amoni, Natl. Hwy. Traffic Safety Admin: “The buzzed person is the one in the background, the one you see who has maybe had one too many, and that's what we're trying to get the message across."

It's aimed at young men, like Dirk McCann, who may not consider moderate drinking dangerous.

Dirk McCann, Washington, DC: "I think you can go out and have a couple of beers and still drive home safely."

Marilena Amoni: "What we found is that buzzed driving is something they think is okay, just getting a buzz on would be all right. And it's not, it's a deadly consequence."

The new ads help show what it means to be buzzed, and encourage personal responsibility, with the goal of keeping those who've had one too many off the roads and saving lives.

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