VENICE (CBSLA.com) — A Venice-based production company is trying to save lives by alerting drivers to the dangers of texting while behind the wheel with a 35-minute PSA.
Saville Productions made the half-hour documentary “From One Second To The Next – It Can Wait”.
The short film, helmed by German director/actor Werner Herzog, was funded by AT&T and other major wireless carriers.
It features testimonials from victims whose lives were forever changed when they were struck by distracted drivers tapping messages like, “I’m on my way,” or taking swift glances at their cell phones.
XZavier Bilbo, eight, is among those victims.
He was run over by a texting driver while holding his sister’s hand.
He is paralyzed from the neck down. His legs, gone.
“There are times when the pain is so bad I can’t breathe,” XZavier’s mother says.
Saville Productions’ Rupert Maconick hopes sharing the boy’s story, and others’, will be a catalyst for texting drivers to change their behavior when they see the devastating outcomes their actions can have.
“When he comes off the wheelchair he has to go on a ventilator… in one moment that distracted person hit that poor child,” Maconick said.
Chandler Gerber is one such driver.
In the short, Gerber relives the moment he killed three children while reading a text.
“I came to a stop and saw the body… I thought, ‘What have I done?'” he recalled.
“From One Second To The Next” has already gone viral.
Its creators say it became apparent during production texting behind the wheel is as dangerous as drinking and driving.
“It felt like an important social media and film message we needed to get across,” Maconick said, adding that it was clear after making several television commercials about the subject it deserved a longer piece.
Gerber meanwhile hopes sharing his story will prevent others from repeating his mistakes.
“Please don’t text and drive. It’s life and you live with the choices you make,” he said.
The film will be distributed to at least 40,000 schools across the U.S.
It can also be viewed online.