Page last updated at 20:34 GMT, Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Ad drive to educate 'boy racers'

Sammy Wilson
Sammy Wilson has backed a campaign to educate boy racers

Boy racers in Northern Ireland are being targeted in a new government road safety campaign on the internet.

The virtual advertisement is aimed at online gamers who use Xbox Live.

Road safety messages are played throughout the games which were tested by Environment Minister Sammy Wilson on Friday.

Mr Wilson said the Department of the Environment's Xbox campaign was aimed at reducing road deaths in the 17-24 age group.

"My department is always looking for innovative ways of getting the road safety message across to all sections of society and this initiative will enable us to target the group most at risk on Northern Ireland roads," Mr Wilson said.

"Young men, especially those who love playing these games, need to be aware there is a big difference between the virtual world and real life where there is no restart button.

"There are no second chances in real life. Unlike the virtual world, if you crash a speeding car or take risks on the road it really will be game over."

The DoE's online adverts will run over Christmas and throughout January on a number of Xbox Live games including 'Project Gotham Racing', the 'Need for Speed' series, and 'MX vs ATV Untamed'.

The advertisements will only be viewed by gamers in Northern Ireland.

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