Rewards for young sober superheroes

By David Kavanagh | posted on November 29, 2019

YOUNG drivers who refrain from drinking before hitting the roads in Denmark this summer could be rewarded as part of a unique anti-drink driving campaign launched last Friday.

The Sober Super Heroes program will see some lucky drivers that blow 0.00 in random breath tests, as well as passengers who choose to travel with sober drivers, rewarded with vouchers from local businesses until January 31.

They will also get the opportunity to answer a couple of questions and go in the draw to win a $400 voucher to be awarded in February.

Denmark Police Sergeant Matt Hartfield said the initiative, now in its third year, was originally drawn up by the Shire of Denmark’s Roadwise Committee.

“People were getting infringements and negative stuff but it wasn’t really changing any factors around serious or fatal crashes,” he said.

“We took it upon ourselves to try something a bit different and I guess the community has embraced it.

“In the last few years there have been no serious or fatal crashes involving young drivers in Denmark, so we’ve either been super lucky or people are starting to think about it.”

Sgt Hartfield said the campaign focused primarily on young people of graduate age and upward.

“There was a bit of a gap where it seemed a lot of fatalities involved younger drivers and that stood out to us,” he explained.

“With social media, this kind of initiative gets out very quickly, especially for that demographic.

“If someone wins a voucher, they post it to their friends and then its shared and people talk about it. They can say the police stopped me and I got a prize … as opposed to the police stopped me and I got a ticket.”

According to the Road Safety Commission, 14.4 per cent of crash crashes that resulted in death or serious injury in the Great Southern between 2013 and 2017 occurred when a driver had a blood alcohol content exceeding 0.05g.

Forty-four people died on the region’s roads during this period.