I don't know how prevelant these are in other countries, but here in Ireland there are continual violent TV commercials reminding people to drive slowly, wear seatbelts, don't drink and drive... etc

They become especially popular around Christmas, bank holidays weekends, and other holiday times.

I don't disagree with having these ads on television, and I'm sure they do help save lives. However there's some things I've noticed about them, and I suppose... if they don't get shown in other countries, then this is your big opportunity to learn/compare/contrast the Irish adverts with your own TV experiences.

The commercials are far more violent than anything else that would be allowed on TV here. Every girlfriend I've had since they've started has had to cover her eyes when they come on (although maybe that says more about my girlfriends than the ads). Obviously, since they're 'for a good cause', there should be some opportunity to bend the rules, but some of them take it too far.

The latest advert here at the moment has moved up a step from previously just showing the gruesome ending... now they start it like a Coke commercial, showing a happy couple having fun and kissing in the park. The music is happy (some pop song repeating the words 'Body to body'), the sun is shining. Then the voiceover begins like "Today, Paul is going to hit his girlfriend so hard, that she suffers permanent brain damage."

During the accident itself, the music stops and stutters and generally gets mixed around: "body to bod... give it... give it... give it to me one more ti... body to body.... body...", as the guy's head hits off the girl's temple in slow-motion, making a sickening thud. This stuff is seriously designed to screw with your mind.

In the detailed, slow-motion anatomy of the accident, the guy ends up cracking two peoples' heads against a window, and critically injuring his girlfriend. At the end, the ambulance driver says "We've got 3 dead in this vehicle; the girl is critical..." and then the catchphrase: "... They say the guy without the seatbelt did the damage."

Update: Ad effectiveness surveys for the commercial mentioned above, 'Damage', show that 73% of young adults are more concerned about wearing a seatbelt following the ad, with 87% being "influenced a lot", and 61% encouraging someone they knew to wear a seatbelt because of the ad. 79% of respondents even talked about the ad with friends and family!