Friday, 11 November 2011

Angry truckers drive radio ad off the air

Don’t mess with truckers.
Fri Nov 11 2011 By Josh Rubin Staff Reporter
Subaru Canada learned that the hard way this week. A Subaru radio spot prompted outrage from truckers upset by their portrayal as sleep-deprived, snack-munching careless drivers. The ad featured a fictitious traffic reporter warning drivers of a trucker on the road who looked like “he hasn’t slept in two days.” Friday, the truckers got their way, with Subaru pulling the ad.

“There really was never any intent to offend truck drivers. Clearly, without the services that truck drivers provide, we wouldn’t have a business,” Subaru spokesman Joe Felstein said in a written statement. “Truck drivers deliver our products safely and on time.”
Canadian Trucking Alliance CTA had slammed the ad, and Friday morning sent a letter to Subaru. A few hours later, they got word the ad was gone. CTA spokesperson Marco Beghetto said yanking the “cheap shot” ad was the right thing to do.
“That kind of portrayal really harkened back to Smokey and the Bandit. That’s not what a truck driver is like these days,” said Beghetto. “I recognize that it was an attempt at satire, but I don’t think any of our members were laughing. The industry takes a lot of pride in its fatigue management.”
A CTA staffer heard the ad Thursday. Beghetto had the radio station play a recording of it to verify the staffer’s account.

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