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WNCN created this public service announcement for school bus traffic law education in partnership with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. It focuses on drivers illegally passing school bus stop arms, putting students in danger, and it was produced by the WNCN Marketing Department.
WNCN investigated school bus traffic law violations and uncovered some staggering statistics. In 2014, during a one-day count, DPI says North Carolina school bus drivers witnessed 3,153 vehicles illegally passing stopped school buses across the state. Since 1999, there have been at least 13 child traffic fatalities at school bus stops and many more injuries. Because WNCN’s coverage went viral on social media, reaching over 25 million people, the decision was made to create this public service announcement.
“We hope this resonates with drivers,” says WNCN Director of Marketing Robby Thomas. “We tried to create something that captures the viewers’ attention and prevents future tragedies. We sincerely appreciate the cooperation of DPI, Harnett County Schools, Harnett County Sheriff’s Office, and our talented young actress, Samantha Rahn, who each played pivotal roles in the success of this production.”
“The PSA highlights the responsibility of all parties involved,” adds Derek Graham, Transportation Services Section Chief for NC Dept. of Public Instruction. “Certainly motorists need to pay attention and obey the law. Students also have a responsibility to keep an eye on approaching vehicles when standing near or stepping into the roadway. We hope parents will use this as an opportunity to have this important safety discussion with their children.”
A variety of resources for students, parents and drivers are now available at WNCN.com, including the PSA. WNCN encourages community participation on social media to spread this message. Join the conversation at #Brake4Buses. The PSA is available for distribution. For more information, contact Robby Thomas at email@example.com.
Follow WNCN on Twitter (@WNCN) and Facebook (WNCNtv). If you have a story idea for the WNCN team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Creative Director/Writer - Robby Thomas
Producer - Jason Kane
Producer - Reuben Carrington
Starring - Samantha Rahn
Music from FirstCom Music
Special thanks to North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, Harnett County Schools and Harnett County Sheriff's Office
From Robby Thomas: "We shot this in just under two hours on a rural stretch of road in Harnett County, NC. We were fortunate with cloud cover, so it's a purely natural light shoot. We used the Panasonic Lumix GH4 and a combination of Canon lenses. Jason Kane shot nearly all of the footage and delivered a fantastic edit, also selecting the gripping FirstCom Music track. Reuben Carrington was an extra set of creative eyes, outstanding production support and pretty solid Jeep driver. The spot was edited in Adobe Premiere & After Effects. I created the #Brake4Buses hashtag for the purposes of coordinating this necessary public safety conversation onto a single thread. Please share. Do it."