Safety Vehicle DayWAHS students shown the dangers of driving while impaired
May 3, 2017
From Staff Reports
On April 27, 2017, roughly 500 students from West Ashley High School participated in the sixth annual Safety Vehicle Day. The event was coordinated by Molly West, one of West Ashley High’s school counselors, and the High School Injury Prevention Coalition (HSIPC). West first began working with the HSIPC when she was hired as the At-Risk counselor at West Ashley High back in 2011.
The event is designed to make students more aware of their decisions and how they affect others. Safety Vehicle Day specifically demonstrates the dangers of drinking and driving and texting while driving. With prom coming up, school officials wanted to help students realize the dangers of driving while impaired and how certain decisions can affect themselves and those around them.
“I think it’s an important event because it exposes students to serious subject matter in a way that is interactive and fun,” said West. “Also, it’s no coincidence that we held the event two days before prom.”
There were five different stations set up for Safety Vehicle Day. The first was the DUI Golf Cart. Students drove a golf cart while wearing goggles that simulated the effects of drinking and driving. Many found it difficult to keep the golf cart inside the course made of traffic cones while wearing the goggles.
The next station was the Texting Golf Cart. Students had to send text messages while driving a golf cart through a course similar to the one for the DUI Golf Cart. Many students commented that they have texted while driving before but wouldn’t do it again.
At the third station students had to work with members of law enforcement and take part in the Police Department Field Sobriety. Students had to wear goggles that simulated the effects of drinking and driving while attempting to walk a straight line. This station simulated what would happen if one was pulled over and was suspected of driving under the influence.
The fourth station was a Meducare Ambulance. At this station, students learned about what happens when first responders arrive at the scene of an accident. A first responder talked about the different types of injuries people often sustain and what treatment would be used as a result. The final station was a Rescue Unit. Two first responders spoke with students about the different extraction tools and other kinds of equipment that is used to remove people from vehicles if they are stuck.
“I hope our students gain knowledge and insight into the dangers of risky decision making and that they are reminded of how valuable their lives are, not only to their families but to their school and community as well,” said West.