In a video, a woman meets a great guy at a party one night. Over the course of the evening, they chat and dance. But whenever he leans in for their first kiss, they keep getting interrupted.
When the party ends, they leave in a car together with some friends. She wears a seatbelt, but he does not. He leans in for one more first kiss attempt in the backseat, but all of the fun comes to an end when another car crashes into them.
The final scene in the South African PSA, called The First Kiss, is heart-wrenching, but apparently very effective. Published by the Western Cape transport department, the video was created to increase awareness about the importance of wearing a seat belt in a vehicle for all passengers.
After just a few weeks, the PSA seems to be working. Seat belt compliance has increased by 161 percent, according to compliance surveys at four major intersections.
"These surveys were snap counts, conducted by actual observation of driver and passenger behavior, not from self-reported behavior," Transport MEC Donald Grant told IOL. "The assessment of the campaign's impact has proved that the scientific, evidence-driven methodologies employed to create First Kiss really work."
Grant also said that passenger fatalities were down 30 percent in May compared to previous years. That means the intensity ofThe First Kiss and the daring of its creators may very well have saved lives.
The video's an important reminder that when we buckle up, we don't just protect ourselves — we protect everyone else in the car with us.