Music video showcases the violent ripple effect of impaired driving

I was surfing YouTube today and came across Simple Plan’s music video for their “Untitled (How Could This Happen to Me?)” song. I’ve heard the song a million times but not being a music video buff, had never seen the video or, to be honest, really paid deep attention to the lyrics and the story.

Until today.

At first I thought it was someone’s compilation put together to the music. Then I realized that no, the song actually tells the story of a car accident on a rainy night. A drunk driver crashes head-on into a car driven by a young girl, who dies. The drunk driver survives, uninjured. The story, told through the lyrics and powerful music, brought me to tears.

I was blow away by how the band incorporated the impact on all the unseen victims. When the cars collide, people in everyday activities are violently thrown into walls and through windows. In this way, the video truly captured the intense, devastating and violent ripple effect that drunk driving has beyond the people in the vehicles.

To quote Simple Plan’s description, “When an accident happens, there are more victims than people think, and many lives are changed forever…Parents, brothers, sisters, sons and daughters, grandparents…everybody feels the impact.Source: Wikipedia 

So very true Simple Plan. Thank you for your contribution to creating awareness.


If for some reason the video doesn’t play, you can catch it here.

Have you experienced the ripple effect of impaired driving or someone else’s poor choices and decisions? I’d love to hear your thoughts…

On August 1, 2009, my beautiful mother-in-law’s life was cut tragically short by an impaired driver and my step-son’s life changed forever. In honor of Donna and Jordan Kennie, please don’t drink and drive. Impaired driving is 100% preventable. Think about it.

Support MADD Canada and follow them on Facebook, Twitter (@maddcanada), YouTube, and on the Web.

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  1. Oh man. That video gave me chills and tears. When the cars collide and the family is throw around, that tugged at something primal inside me. What a powerful video. And then the drunk guy doesn’t even have a scratch on him ~ that’s usually how it happens. Makes me so mad that anyone thinks they are okay to drive after drinking.

    • I agree Tameri, I had the same experience when I watched it and saw the family thrown all around. It was so powerful because that’s exactly how we’ve all felt…it was intense to see it illustrated so graphically and visually.

      It enrages me to think that people would ever even take the slightest risks with the lives of others…..why?!?! It makes no sense…

      Thanks again for all your uberlicious support and friendship! MUAH! xox

  2. Oh Natalie! Tears are still streaming down my face and it will take a while to move away from the effect of this video. Like you, I have heard the song many times and had NO IDEA this was the subject matter. Has MADD been using this in any of its campaigns? What a powerful, powerful, video and kudos to Simple Plan for tackling the subject with so much raw honesty and emotion. Let’s all work to getting it as much promotion as possible!

    • It is a powerful video, eh Patricia. It moved me as well.

      I believe when it came out in 2005 that MADD in the USA used it in some of their promotional material but I can’t say for sure. I think it could be resurrected to be used now.

      Thanks for helping get the word out as much as possible. Means the world to me!

  3. Natalie, this video has been required viewing in Virginia for at least the past 4 years. My oldest (now 19) and my second son (now 16) were each required to watch it as part of the driver’s ed program. We parents were also required to accompany our children to these education nights, so I’d already seen it twice. Still powerful.

  4. Natalie, I just finished watching the video. I think I just had a piloerection. Thanks for sharing it and making others aware of the consequences of drinking and driving.

  5. I’m not I’ve ever shared this, Natalie, but an old boyfriend of mine lost his best friend to a drunk driving accident. I was with my boyfriend soon after he found out, and that loss affected his whole family. Losing a family member or friend does ripple out. It’s so frustrating to find out that someone got into a car while intoxicated, not thinking what negative and permanent impact they could have.

    • Wow Julie, no I don’t think you’ve ever told me that. What an experience to witness first-hand the ripple effect of the decision to drive impaired. It is definitely frustrating and infuriating to think people still take that kind of risk with the lives of others…it’s shameful!

  6. Wow, Natalie. What a poignant video! The music says as much as the words, which always impresses me.

    Thanks for all you do to spread awareness!

  7. amazing video. gave me goose bumps. when I was 19, my 15 year old sister and her best friend and their two boy friends jumped in a car driven by another male and were driving into Calgary from a small town on the city’s outskirts. They didn’t make it. The driver was driving at extremely high speed and lost control of the car, which knocked down an electrical pole, (snapping the wire) and ended climbing up a big poplar tree.

    My sister was thrown out of the vehicle and landed on the broken electrical wire. She was killed by 40,000 volts of electricity. Had she landed a few inches over, she would probably have survived. Her best friend was also dead at the scene.

    Their two boyfriends died on the tuesday following, four days later and the day before the girls were buried. The driver was kept overnight in the hospital for observation and was released the next morning.

    Alcohol was not involved but that accident destroyed my mother. it took my family years to recover and sometimes I’m not sure we have. I catch myself wondering how my life would be different if my sister had lived. How would my family’s reaction to mom’s Alzheimer’s be affected were she here with us? It’s an unanswerable question. She would have been 58 this summer and i miss her still.

    I know this isn’t an alcohol related death, Natalie, so I thank you for the space to share my pain and the cost to my family of high speed. Stay well my friend. I hope Sandy misses you.

    • Louise, thank you so much for sharing your story! I had no idea. How traumatic and devastating for you and your family. You know first hand the ripple effect of the loss of a life that was so preventable. Driving drunk, distracted or recklessly to me all fall into the same “well” since the accidents, deaths, and injuries that follow as a result are all 100% preventable. Sometimes I think that is what is hardest to swallow and leads to the haunting “what ifs” that spin through our minds endlessly. It’s someone else’s stupidity that lands you a life sentence of pain and wondering. It’s so unfair. You are right, unanswerable questions…so sad!

      My deepest condolences and sympathies. I know that is not a loss one ever recovers from. I am sending you a big hug and thank you for sharing your story here…I am honored and touched by your openness…come back and share any time!

      So far I think Sandy is just bringing a whole pile of rain but we’ll see. Thanks Louise…

  8. The first time I saw the video, I cried. My daughter watched it soon after it was made, did some checking around, and told me the story behind it. It’s very heartbreaking, but I will always like this group because they chose such a compelling way to show people what can happen when you’re stupid enough to drink and drive.

  9. Reblogged this on Kristy K. James and commented:
    I have loved this video from the first time I saw it. Such a heart-wrenching visual about what can happen when someone drinks and drives. Tragedies like this don’t just affect the victims in the other car, it affects everyone who ever knew them.

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