Impaired driving PSAs/Videos pack an emotional punch

New public service announcements (PSAs) and videos that were unveiled by MADD Canada and NB Liquor take viewers beyond the numbers and statistics to see the real life impact of impaired driving on two New Brunswick residents.

In the English PSA and video, 16-year-old Kali O’Dell describes the heartbreaking loss of her parents in an impaired driving crash. Kali and her brother were also severely injured in the 2006 crash.

“The engine had lodged itself into their legs,” Kali remembers. “I remember leaning forward and I knew I couldn’t save Mom. Dad was gone. I could tell already. So I kissed their cheeks and told them I loved them. That was the last time I kissed my mother.”

Hear Kali’s Story

Video (3 minutes)

PSA (30 seconds)

The accident took place on October 29, 2006 and on March 25, 2008 – almost two years later – Valmont Antoine LeBlanc was sentenced to five years in prison  after pleading guilty to impaired driving causing death and impaired driving causing bodily harm. The judge in the case said he wanted to send a “message” to people who drink and drive. Sad to think that a judge in NB thinks that sentencing this man to five years in prison is a “message” of deterrence. The guy will likely be eligible for parole and be back out in our communities in a year or two while Kali and her brother’s lives are forever changed.

As stated by Kali’s grandfather in the news story: “Life wouldn’t be long enough, as far as I’m concerned. I find it strange that our judicial system says the maximum is 14 years to life. So why are they giving him five years? I just don’t understand.”

Yes – why indeed?

What do you think of the videos? Do you think that they will be effective in helping create enough awareness to lower the rates of impaired driving or will people still think “it won’t happy to me”?

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