VIDEO: Tragic timing for road safety film

A NEW road safety film created  by a Warrnambool woman was launched yesterday only hours after a double fatality near Lismore.

The release had been planned weeks ago, but its stark message urging drivers to take care was given extra impact with news of the south-west tragedy.

Maddy Cheyne, 20, was regional Victoria’s first finalist and one of two winners of a competition run by the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) to encourage young people to keep their mates safe on the roads.

Inspired by The Wizard of Oz, Ms Cheyne created her film No Place Like Home Safe in Warrnambool, with filming at the Gallery Niteclub and Ozone car park.

“By using an iconic film with characters that everyone recognises and placing them in a situation a lot of people have found themselves in, whether to drive after drinking — I thought it was an effective way to connect to the audience,” she said.

Premier and South West Coast MP Denis Napthine launched the film, which can be seen on YouTube and will be screened at cinemas and on the TAC party bus at youth events.

“There’s a really strong message for all Victorians to take care on the roads during the Christmas season,” Dr Napthine said.

“If this short film targets young people   and gets the message across about don’t drink and drive, don’t take drugs and drive, take care on the road and stay alert, it will be a great result.

“It’s fantastic to have someone to bring a regional perspective

“Within the high-risk group of young people the highest group is those from regional and rural areas.

“Unfortunately they often think they are Jamie Whincup and Craig Lowndes rolled into one.

“Just because they have been driving the farm bomb around since they were 12 or 13 doesn’t mean they are necessarily safer on our roads.”

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