Road safety campaign launched in Milton Keynes

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If you have been shopping in Milton Keynes recently, then you may have noticed some very mysterious looking glove compartments in between your travels from one shop to another.

The hordes of bemused shoppers in Centre:MK who were intrigued by the pop-up compartments, may be surprised to learn that it’s actually part of a new Government campaign.

The units are part of THINK!’s new mobile campaign that launched on March 1 alerting drivers to the now-doubled penalties for using a handheld phone while driving.

Drivers who have recently passed their test face losing their licence if they use their phones at the wheel, and more than 2,750 drivers were caught in the first week following the tougher measures.

To help drivers avoid temptation, THINK! is encouraging drivers to put their phones in their glove compartment to avoid picking up a whopping six points and £200 fine.

Stickers have been created – renaming the glove compartment, the ‘phone compartment’ – to remind drivers to put their phone away before setting off.

The poster units, which have sprung up in shopping centres across the country, have a 3D mould of a glove compartment to illustrate the new advice.

The structure contains a flashing phone and when touched releases a ‘phone compartment’ sticker that is intended to be placed on the drivers’ own glove compartment.

Those of us who have been caught out shopping with a dying battery will be relieved to learn that the units also include a phone charging point, as well as a headphone slot that plays the campaign’s new radio advert.

The interactive advertising units were developed to encourage people to engage with the campaign message and learn more about the new, tougher penalties.

The THINK! team worked with marketing agency MKTG to develop the experiential advertising units.

An MKTG spokesperson said: “We wanted to create a fun and exciting customer experience that would help to educate the public about the new penalties.

“The THINK! campaign is designed to get drivers to put their phone away in the glove compartment and we wanted to replicate that action in the shopping mall by merging a variety of interactive features.

“The response to the units has been really positive and thousands of stickers have been issued to drivers across the country.

“The units are a real talking point and help to reflect upon and reinforce the message that you should always put your phone away before driving.”

Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling, said: “Our message is simple and clear: do not get distracted by your mobile phone while driving.

“It may seem innocent, but holding and using your phone at the wheel risks serious injury and even death to yourself and other road users.

“Everyone has a part to play in encouraging their family and friends not to use their phones while driving – it is as inexcusable as drink driving.”