Bucking the trend of dull or horrific transport safety ads, Metro Trains’ Dumb Ways to Die coats its grave warning in a gooey and catchy melody, adorned with cute cartoon characters and beautifully simplistic animation. This unlikely combination, combined with its gruesome subject matter has caused the Melbourne-produced video to go viral, attracting almost 8 million views in less than a week – a figure waaaaay above the population of Melbourne itself.
While some may criticise the approach as insensitive towards those who have lost their lives due to transport accidents, it remains an unfortunate perspective form those working within the industry.
“The Dumb Ways to Die campaign evolved out of discussion with platform staff and drivers who witness people risking their safety around train stations and at level crossings,” said Leah Waymark, General Manager Corporate Relations, Metro Trains.
“The ‘dumb’ theme had its gestation in those initial responses. It was just an overwhelming theme of their feedback.”
“Some people might have an issue with us making light of what is a serious topic, but if we can save one life or avoid serious injury, then that’s how we’ll measure the success of this campaign.”
The catchy little ditty was performed by Melbourne artist Tangerine Kitty, while the song was produced by Cat Empire keyboards player Ollie McGill.