The new campaign focuses on some of the major causes of accidents, including alcohol, use of mobile phones and excessive speed.
The black and white film uses graphic images of people in the aftermath of road accidents while a voiceover runs through the factors that lead to deaths.
“For as long as there’s too much alcohol in the driver’s blood, there will be blood on the roads. For as long as a driver misses a bend because he didn’t want to miss a phone call, we’ll be calling ambulances,” run the opening lines.
The campaign is signed with the endline “Tous Responsable” (“We’re all responsible.”)
Official figures showed there were 3,970 deaths on the roads in 2011, a very small improvement on the 3,992 recorded in 2010. Over ten years, the number of deaths on French roads has fallen by half.
The French figure is still high compared to some European countries. In the UK, with a similar population, the number of road deaths in 2010 was 1,857, half the French rate.
President Sarkozy stated his ambition in December 2007 to get the annual level below 3,000. A number of measures have been introduced including greater use of cameras and tougher fines. There are plans for new measures including forcing every car to carry a breathalyzer.