Many people learn through their mistakes – but it’s often through mistakes where lessons are learned the hardest. But what if you could make a mistake – virtually – and learn from the experience without the burden of any negative consequence?
Students at San Diego Mesa College have gotten to do just that after the San Diego Police and Fire Departments held a mock DUI arrest and virtual death after students underwent a simulated drunken drive. The initiative is due in part to the 13,000 deaths related to DUIs every year.
Interested students watched with their jaws dropped as the San Diego Fire Department gave a live demonstration of the Jaws of Life, a spectacular hydraulic rescue tool that cuts, rams, busts, and wields doors open after a catastrophic drunk driving accident occurs and an injured person must be rescued.
“I thought it was really interesting, it made me realize a lot,” said Sophomore Alba Islas.
The demonstration, however, was not without its more poignant moments as Monica Zech, a Public Information Officer in El Cajon, spoke to students about her accident which was caused by reckless driving. After the accident, Zech underwent a $65,000 surgery to help her become mobile again.
“I really don’t drink but it’s still good to see and be aware of these things,” said Sophomore Caroline Andrade.
SDPD asked students to undergo a field sobriety test and handcuffed students after they engaged in the mock DUI arrest.
In addition to the dangers of drunk driving, students learned about traffic violations and ticketing.
“I’m here to let them have an idea of what we do,” said Officer Gabriel Espiritu. “I wanted them to undergo what the impaired driver does.”
Officer Amalia Sidhu added: “I’m helping to bring awareness of what alcohol does to the body.”
Teen driving & DUIs
Not every student is fortunate enough to undergo simulated drunk driving initiatives – but parents can help reduce DUIs in their household by enforcing their own “rules and regulations” for their teen and/or young adult drivers. Start by downloading your free parent/teen driving contract and outline the rules for reckless and drunk driving. Then, consider the following suggestions as you write your contract:
Consequences clearly defined
Discuss the consequences if a negative event occurs: speeding or traffic violations, accidents, or damaging a vehicle.
There will be a time when your teen will finally have to be responsible for their driving on their own, without intervention from parents. Make sure to determine how long the contract will last; you may consider keeping the contract valid until your new driver exists his teenage years.
An open-door policy in asking for help
Teens will be teens, so if a mistake does happen, and underage drinking occurs, allow your teen an opportunity to call you when s/he needs to. Discuss consequences later; let your teen know you have an open-door policy if s/he runs into a troubling situation. It’s better to invite your teen to call you if an emergency presents itself rather than risk a car accident.
About the Law Offices of Michael Pines, APC
As specialists in car accident injury, the law firm is dedicated to helping injured people collect maximum financial recovery. A car accident injury resulting from a DUI can be a complex case and our law firm can answer your legal questions for free. Call us now at 1-800-655-6585 for your free legal evaluation.