Mom and DPD Lieutenant Create film PSA to raise Seat Belt Awareness
“For All You Live For, Seat Belts Save Lives.” That’s the message the City of Dickson Police Department wants the views to take to heart.
Lieutenant David Cole, who has been a staunch advocate of Seat Belt Safety, has been driving home the massage for years. His 2017 Seat Belt Selfie social media campaign caught statewide attention ad Cole was awarded the “Directors Award” through the Tennessee Highway Safety Office.
Cole sought to take the message further when he approached Kem Schmalzer about making a 30 second film/tv public service announcement. Schmalzer, a retired award-winning film/video editor and now a stay-at-home mom, said she was more than happy to help as the message hit a personal note with her.
Schmalzer lost her sister after her SUV rolled over. Her sister was not wearing a seatbelt. Also with her having two teenage drivers, it was a powerful motivator to do something to get Lt. Cole’s message across.
According to the Tennessee Department of Safety and Homeland Security and Tennessee Highway Partol, there were 1,047 traffic fatalities in Tennessee in 2018, a 2.2% increase from 2017. Of those fatalities, 299 were not wearing a seat belt at the time of their death.
“We could greatly reduce trafﬁc fatalities if we can get more people to just buckle up,” Cole said.
There are several approaches to getting a message across in a public service announcement. Schmalzer said she wanted viewers to feel good about buckling up and coined the catch phrase, “For All You Live For” followed up by Cole’s message, “Seat Belts Save Lives.” The spot starts with several individuals buckling up and then shows a girl jumping in the air, two teens doing a congratulatory handslap/handshake, a high school couple on their way to Prom, and a mom and her son dancing.
And their approach has been a phenomenal success. In the ﬁrst 48 hours after a soft launch on social media, the PSA attracted over 8,200 views. It is also being broadcast in 35 markets over NECAT and plays before all movie showings at the Roxy Theater in Dickson, TN.
Although Cole is ecstatic about the number of people seeing the message, he’s more interested in increasing the number of people wearing a seat belt.
“I would love to see parents/adults being good role models for their own kids and even for their neighbors or friend’s kids by simply buckling up. That would help show those kids that it must be a good idea because a parent/role model buckled up. I believe in leading by example and trying to be the best role model I can to help lead the way….the correct way,” said Cole.
For more information about buckling up or to see the Seat Belt Awareness PSA, visit www.dicksonpd.org or the department’s Facebook page at City of Dickson Police Department, Tennessee. Cole said he hopes viewers will watch the PSA and help spread the message on Facebook with “Like” and “Share” or on Twitter.