Many South African drivers have taken to removing their number plates to avoid receiving dreaded speeding fines. The resultant reckless driving has been the cause of many pedestrians and motorists losing their lives. To raise awareness of this issue, full service agency Joe Public approached Arrive Alive with an innovative idea.
“I was on my way to a social event when I was cut off by a driver without number plates on his car,” says Brendan Hoffmann, Art Director at Joe Public. “Once I'd got over the irritation I had an idea to create magnetic number plates ‘SPEEDKILLS GP' and place these on the vehicles of potential offenders.”
The Joe Public team including creative director Xolisa Dyeshana, art director Brendan Hoffmann and copywriter Vincent Osmond approached Arrive Alive to sell in the idea. “As a pro bono project, Joe Public covered all the costs and the client was thrilled with the concept, as on the reverse of each plate was a stern Arrive Alive message,” says Brendan.
Alternating messages - ‘When you have a head-on collision at 180KM/H, a speeding fine will be the least of your worries'; ‘When you end a child's life at 200KM/H, a speeding fine will be the least of your worries' and ‘When you dismember a pedestrian at 160KM/H, a speeding fine will be the least of your worries' - have also been used.
The agency produced over 100 magnetic plates, scoured Gauteng for empty registration spots and promptly filled these with the SPEEDKILLS GP number plate.
“We took a camera, waited and filmed the reaction of motorists returning to find their luxury vehicle sporting a brand new number plate,” says Brendan. “Some were shocked, some were indifferent but they all read the reverse message when removing the plate. Most people took the number plates with them when they drove off.”
The Refinery kindly offered its studio to allow Joe Public the opportunity to edit its hours of filming down to five minutes.
“We ultimately wanted to get conversation going among drivers around Gauteng and we certainly did that,” they say. “Once word had spread, e.tv and the News24 website began a debate around drivers who remove their license plates to sponsor irresponsible road habits.”