The 13th Floor

His Name is “Graham,” and He’s the Most Horrifying Safety Mascot of All Time

Usually, when we post a story about something terrifying and/or deadly in Australia, it concerns some kind of monstrous snake or spider that just tried to eat someone’s face. But the latest scream-worthy horror to emerge from Down Under was specifically created to raise awareness for a totally human-caused hazard.

Still, despite the good intentions behind the project, it’s already freaking out thousands of people around the world.

Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign
Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign

His name is “Graham,” and he’ll be waiting for you in your next nightmare. (Or if you want to meet him personally, Go here.)

Molded in fiberglass from the skeleton up, complete with internal organs, ultra-realistic silicone skin and real human hair, Graham was designed to illustrate what the human body might look like if it had evolved to withstand a car accident.

The creepy figure was commissioned by the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) in Melbourne, and designed by trauma surgeon Christian Kenfield and artist Patricia Piccinini. The TAC describe Graham as a visual aid to provoke “discussion about human vulnerability.”

“The head has a much bigger skull so it acts like a bicycle helmet,” Kenfield told the Telegraph. “Graham actually has no neck; he has no cervical spine that can be fractured in a whiplash injury. These ribs are super-ribs, absorbing much more of the force.”

Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign
Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign

“Cars have evolved a lot faster than humans,” said TAC chief executive officer Joe Calafiore, “and Graham helps us understand why we need to improve every aspect of our roads system to protect ourselves from our own mistakes.”

Many people seem totally freaked out by Graham, but the artist insists he’s a character we can connect with, describing him as “very Australian.”

Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign
Image Credit: TAC Vulnerability Campaign

“[T]he eyes are where the work is,” Piccinini told the Telegraph. “It’s where you can really connect with him and empathize. If he was aggressive or belligerent, we wouldn’t be able to do that.”

She makes a good point there: if Graham suddenly began acting aggressively, I think a lot of people would start screaming and never stop.

x