A light-hearted approach to a serious issue

There’s nothing funny about railway crossing and trespassing incidents. But sometimes, a little humour is the best way to change how people think—especially young people.
Operation Lifesaver (OL) Canada’s newest campaign, Seriously. Read the Signs., takes a light-hearted approach to educating young Canadians about rail safety. Designed to appeal to youth between 13 and 24, Seriously. Read the Signs. consists of three short, animated videos:
Each minute-long video features an imaginary, animated world, and “stars” Reb (short for “Rebel”), a mischievous character who ignores everyday signs, and as a result, ends up taking some very unexpected turns (think: alien encounter and jelly bath).
Seriously. Read the Signs. drives home the point that while it might be easy to ignore signs—or to think that they don’t apply to you—not following them can have unintended consequences,” says Sarah Mayes, National Director of Operation Lifesaver Canada. “And when those signs are around tracks or trains, it could even cost you your life.”
Helping young people to think differently about railway signs and signals
Operation Lifesaver has produced several successful public-awareness campaigns in recent years, including #STOPTrackTragedies, Look. Listen. Live., and Train to Drive. But OL wanted to develop some fresh videos in 2022 to capture the attention of those who tend to ignore traditional PSAs. In response, OL’s advertising agency, Spruce Creative, pitched Seriously. Read the Signs.
“Our hope is that by creating a humorous and quirky campaign, we can make youth think twice about ignoring the safety rules—and signs—that are in place to keep them safe,” says Cindy MacBride, Spruce Creative’s Director of Client Experience.

All three Seriously. Read the Signs. videos will be posted to OL’s website, and promoted on social media, in the hopes of reaching as many young Canadians as possible. Check out the videos today—and why not share them with the young people in your life? Seriously. It could save their life.