7 Sep 2009

Telecom tunnel advert ruled highly dangerous

5:45 pm on 7 September 2009

Part of a Telecom advertisement featuring British Top Gear star Richard Hammond has been criticised by the Advertising Standards Authority.

The authority found one scene filmed in the Mt Victoria tunnel in central Wellington is highly dangerous and could encourage people to disregard safety.

Telecom's XT mobile network was launched in May with an advertising campaign challenging people to "Test drive the XT network today''.

In one scene, stuntwoman Zoe Bell is standing up in a four-wheel-drive vehicle being driven thorough the tunnel as she talks on a mobile phone.

Three people complained to the authority, which ruled against the tunnel scene.

Telecom spokesperson Nick Brown says they were careful to make sure Bell was shown as a Hollywood stuntwoman.

Mr Brown says Telecom has accepted the ruling and the advert now runs with the subtitle "Filmed under controlled conditions''.