Geneva students get real life lesson in drunk driving dangers

Posted by: Melissa Johnson - bio | email

Geneva, AL (WSFA) – First responders rush to the scene of a deadly car wreck caused by drunk driving.

A 16-year old is dead and two are in critical condition, but lucky for these teenagers, it's all just an act.

Its part of a simulation put on by local law enforcement to show the dangers of drinking and driving.

Junior Tate Sutherland played the role of the drunk driver.

He says despite practicing his lines, nothing could have prepared him for how real it felt.

"The sirens started, and everything got more realistic.  I forgot everything I was supposed to say.  I was thinking that I never want to be in that situation—taking the life of someone with a careless mistake, " he said.

As the students watched the scene play out, they say the mangled cars and classmates covered in blood really hit close to home.

Senior Sarah Elizabeth Sanders said, "One day you could be talking to them in class, and the next day you could be at their funeral.  That's just a scary thought."

Christopher Brooks, who was one of the teens who was "injured" in the demonstration said, "As teenagers, we always think, you know, nothing can hurt us.  But seeing something like this, it really opens everyone's eyes."

It's a dose of reality officers hope drives home the seriousness of these real life consequences.

Geneva Police Officer Josh Waller said, "I see these kids almost every weekend and every night, and there have been times that we've taken up alcohol from them.  I thought it was important that they see the cause and effect of what could happen."

Sutherland said, "I know some of us are going to take it more seriously than others, but if it ends up keeping them alive and them not making that mistake, it's all worth it."

He hopes it a sobering reminder just in time for prom season.

After the demonstration, students signed the "Prom Promise", pledging not to drink and drive at the prom this weekend.

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