Northern Ireland has the highest levels of road traffic deaths and injuries in the UK, with drink driving contributing to 15% of road deaths between 1995 and 1999. The key group to target was 17- to 24-year-old males, who were responsible for 39% of alcohol-related traffic deaths.

The campaign had to make clear that there was no excuse for drink driving.

As well as positioning this behaviour as socially and personally shameful, the campaign aimed to increase the number of people who do not consume any alcohol if they are driving. The agency focused on the thought that 'driving on even one drink can turn good times into the worst of times', with the TV execution asking: 'Could you live with the shame?'

The aim was to hit 16- to 34-year-old males and all adults in the run-up to Christmas and during the summer. The campaign kicked off in November 2000 with airtime upweighted between Sunday and Thursday.

Other media included bus rears, car park barriers and adverts in the local titles, while Admobiles went to Celtic League rugby matches. The Belfast Giants ice hockey team penalty box was also sponsored.

In February 2002, the Shame campaign was the highest spontaneously recalled ad campaign in Northern Ireland. Attitudes have changed, with more young drivers now recognising that drinking any amount of alcohol could affect driving ability. It's now become 35% less acceptable to drive after one drink among this group.

In 2001 there was a 13% reduction in all road deaths and 44% fewer fatalities due to driver/rider under the influence of alcohol or drugs. The number of deaths fell from 43 in 2000 to 24 in 2001. In economic terms this has saved more than £20m.


Campaign: Shame - anti-drink driving

Agency: McCann-Erickson Belfast

Client: Department of the Environment NI

Creative Directors: David Lyle, Julie Anne Bailie

Art Director: Julie Anne Bailie

Copywriters: David Lyle, Julie Anne Bailie

Film Director: Syd Macartney

Advertising Manager: Jim Rankin

Principal Authors: David Lyle, Julie Anne Bailie, Pamela Baird, Dawn


With Contributions From: Robert Lyle, John Brolly, Sinead Holland


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