WALTERS, Okla. (TNN) - Cotton County officials showed Walters High School students how drinking and driving can change lives forever with a deadly wreck simulation on Monday.
It’s every parent’s worst nightmare - the call that their child is dead after drinking and driving, seeing them in a mangled vehicle, covered in blood.
Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Zachary Wright said they’re trying to avoid this ahead of prom season.
“We deal with several underage fatality accidents, kids drinking,” he said. “The law is different for them. If you’re under the age of 21, pretty much anything in your system is going to be a DUI and it can affect you differently. We just hammer that home to kids to call a ride, call your parents. I’d rather get in trouble from my mom and dad than hurt somebody.”
He said they could sit the kids in the classroom and show them a video or presentation, but it’s more effective and hits closer to home when they see their own classmates in the car and their families’ reactions.
“If parents could talk to their kids more about the effects of this,” he said. “I mean, if they come and see it and their parents see it, we need to talk to our kids and explain to them, this can happen. Like I said out there in the presentation, the average drunk driver drives 87 times before they get caught.”
He said in this day and age with all the technology available, there’s no excuse for drinking and driving.
Director of Cotton County Emergency Management Lorie Hedges said the presentation also covered driving while high or distracted.
“Mainly so they can see the impact that drinking and driving or any type of impaired driving has on families,” she said. “Like their friends. This was simulated for their classmates were involved in this. It shows them just exactly what happens to them and how it affects everybody involved.”
Senior Hailey Franklin said she hopes this is an eye-opener for some of her classmates.
“I really hope that the kids that don’t take stuff serious like this learn something from it today because it can happen in the blink of an eye,” she said, “and you don’t want to sit half of your life in jail because of a stupid mistake you made when you were a senior in high school.
Wright said if they can save even one life with these simulations, it’s worth it.
They’ll be performing the same simulation with students in Randlett and Temple soon.