London, 21 Dec 2000.
For immediate release.

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Press Release

Advertising Kills?
The Association of British Drivers welcomes the removal of semi pornographic posters from the roadside.
In light of the Advertising Standards Authority decision to ban the advert featuring a 'naked' Sophie Dahl, the ABD questions the sense in allowing the most powerful advertisers to purposely distract drivers as they attempt to deal with the already hazard strewn highways.

ABD spokesman, Tony Heathington, said

"Most studies into the causes of road accidents show innattentiveness to be one of the biggest causes, yet the sharpest advertising brains are allowed to grab drivers' attention at major road junctions around the UK. Distracting drivers from the serious task of safe driving is big business - but it would be interesting to see if the Government have a real desire to improve road safety and ban the hoardings from the roadside, along with removing advertising from the back end of commercial vehicles, buses and mobile hoardings."

"A typically busy road will present hazards such as traffic signals, bus lanes, speed humps, speed cameras, crossings, pedestrians, children, ad infinitum. Rotating, mobile and fixed advertisments, designed to grab attention, are the last thing that a driver needs to drive safely. Add to this the pressure to read text and write down telephone numbers written on the back of a bus or van and it's a wonder drivers have time to look at the road at all."

Brian Gregory, Chairman of the ABD concluded,

"The Government is transfixed in its misguided belief that speed is the primary cause of accidents, when in reality it only plays a very small part. Inattentiveness is one of the biggest causes of accidents, and the majority of these occur at busy junctions in towns. The removal of all advertising from the road and roadside environment would be a major contribution to road safety."


Notes for Editors