Passengers, do you feel uncomfortable every time the driver is distracted by their mobile phones while behind the wheel? How about some unexpected physical contact to solve the dangerous behaviour?

That’s the idea behind the New Zealand Transport Authority’s new road safety campaign. See, it doesn’t take much for an accident to take place while driving. Simply by diverting your attention away from the road to glance at the phone’s screen is enough for an unwanted incident to occur.

The campaign, titled ‘Hello’, uses Lionel Ritchie’s hit song in a manner that results in the drivers’ eyes being wide open and blank faces each time they even consider reaching for the phone. Calling it creepy, awkward or perfect, is very much dependent on the viewer. We won’t spoil the content here, but it is quite a humorous ad to watch.

According to NZTA Senior education adviser Adrian Stephenson, research suggests that driver distraction is likely to be a factor in 20-30% of crashes. Instead of the standard shock tactics, the campaign that uses the tagline “Put me first. Drive phone free” is looking to visualise the discomfort felt by passengers.

So Malaysians, the next time your driver appears to be reaching for the phone, this could be the solution you’re looking for. Just don’t freak him or her out too much.