National Highway Safety officials said over 13,000 people lost their lives to crashes that involved drunk or distracted drivers in 2017.
Local students got a unique chance to see what it’s like to drive distracted or intoxicated without hurting anyone Tuesday.
Teachers at North Shelby schools said they wanted to give students the opportunity to experience what it’s like firsthand to drive distracted or intoxicated so they make right decision, especially with homecoming just around the corner.
The simulation brought to the school by the Arrive Alive Tour, uses a real car’s steering wheel, pedals, tires, and a VR headset to give you the first-person experience of crashing.
“I was expecting it to be kinda how it was, it was really frightening at first and it happened really fast,” said North Shelby freshman Ava Williams.
Williams said it was over before she knew it, the second she looked away.
“I thought I would be a better driver while texting cause you don’t think it would be that hard, but it definitely is a lot harder when you’re actually doing it, I couldn’t even finish the text,” said Williams.
Jennifer Chandler, one of the teachers who helped bring the simulation to North Shelby, said that’s exactly what they wanted students to feel.
“This year our goal is to actually get our students to buckle up but more importantly speak up and to not be afraid to say something if they’re in the vehicle with someone who is practicing unsafe driving habits,” said Chandler.
She said it’s especially important this time of year.
“This is the beginning of our North Shelby Homecoming, and a Homecoming is often a time when students make bad choices and so while we couldn’t get it in our Traction week, we were super happy they were able to kick off our homecoming with making sure these kids make the right choices behind the wheel,” said Chandler.
A lesson Williams said she’s definitely taking to heart.
“Distractions can be really bad for you and really dangerous for you and others on the road,” said Williams.
Officials with the Arrive Alive Tour said everyday people drive drunk around 300,000 but only around 2,300 of those people are ever arrested.
If you’re a teacher or parent who’s interested in having your kids experience something like this, click here to go to their website where they have a number you call to learn more about how you can have the arrive alive tour come to your school.