‘Counting sheep’ spreads the fatigue message

News story
An inspired student road safety campaign, adding a twist to the notion of counting sheep to get to sleep, is the selected campaign in the inaugural Re:act program for Western Australia.
The road is no place for counting sheep banner. Car on bed with sheep

Created by Curtin University students Aisha Derrick, Ashlin Macintyre, Sajeda Mohammadi and Stephanie Pacia, the eye-catching ‘The road is no place for counting sheep’ campaign creates awareness of fatigued driving among young people.

The campaign was created as part of the Re:act road safety behaviour change program, which challenges local university students to create a campaign that raises awareness among 18-25 year old road users of a critical road safety issue. It is the first time Re:act has run in WA.

An initiative of Hard Edge, Re:act has been conducted in Australia since 2016. This year, Re:act is being run with Curtin University in Perth, Swinburne University in Melbourne, University of Technology Sydney, and Queensland University of Technology. The Re:act program is also running overseas, through University of the Arts London.

Selected student campaigns from each university in Australia will be developed with Hard Edge and oOh!media for public execution via oOh!media’s extensive network of media assets including university campus, retail, street furniture and roadside billboards.

WA Minister for Road Safety Paul Papalia commended the work of the Re:act behaviour change project in addressing road safety issues facing young drivers by developing campaigns with university students.

“University students are best placed to speak the language of the target audience for this campaign,” he said.

“The McGowan Government commends everyone involved at Curtin University, in particular the creative talent behind what are really important road safety messages.”

Re:act founder Andrew Hardwick said: “It’s great to have WA involved in Re:act for the first time this year. We thank Curtin for its support as well as the Road Safety Commission, who really got behind the program, along with program partners Telstra and the National Road Safety Partnership Program.

“The ‘Counting Sheep’ campaign was just so clever. The research students conducted in how to approach their creative was commendable and their execution of the idea was real-world agency level.

“It’s a fantastic campaign and we can’t wait to see it on the streets of Perth and across regional areas of the State.”

Noel Cook, oOh!media Chief Commercial & Operations Officer, added: “We look forward to working with the Curtin students to reach young drivers across Australia with this important road safety message around the dangers of fatigue on our roads.

“Our team of creative specialists will provide consultancy and technical assistance to ensure that we deliver a powerful Out of Home campaign that leads to behavioural change among young people. Using our internal expertise and our extensive network of signs is a proven combination to save young lives when they get behind the wheel.”

Curtin student Aisha Derrick said the research participating Re:act students completed had increased their awareness of driving fatigued as a road safety issue as well as informing a campaign that would have an impact on young drivers.

“Counting sheep is a nostalgic story from our childhood, so everyone understands it immediately, but then we added an impactful twist so the campaign was memorable and left an imprint on your mind,” she said.

“I’m excited to see the campaign up on billboards. It makes going into multiple shops to buy the little sheep worth it.”

Visit reactforchange.com to learn more about the Re:act program.

Page reviewed 1 September 2021