Scared straight: CCSO holds mock trauma situation to show dangers of texting & driving

Thursday, October 7, 2019
News 12 at 6 o'clock/NBC at 7

COLUMBIA COUNTY, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) -- Another issue plaguing teenagers is texting and driving. How do you convince them not to do it?

Columbia County decided to set up a mock trauma situation to show the dangers of texting and driving, complete with students as the crash victims.

There was a mock trauma scenario and a real car that was in a crash. The goal is to show students the realities that deputies, fire rescue, the coroner, doctors face every single day.

1.6 million crashes, half a million injuries, 6,000 deaths. Every single year, texting and driving kills.

Kyla Gray and Jack Matthews are high school students but today they're actors.

"There's glass everywhere and wires and broken stuff. It's bad. There's a baby seat in the back."

A situation like this, where first responders are tearing the doors off a smashed car, pulling your body out onto a stretcher and trying to stop the bleed from all the shattered glass.

"I don't think you really realize how dangerous it is until you see something like this or you're in this situation."

Deputy Trevan Baker says while this might be a drill, on most days it's a reality.

"You see texting and driving every single day. Just because the law is in place, there are still a lot of infractions to where it's still happening," said Baker.

In the last year, Columbia County issued 24 citations for texting while driving, while many more drivers got off with a warning. There were also 23 accidents where texting was a contributing factor.

"Texting, cell phone usage, any type of distraction while you're driving your motor vehicle, it can wait. Seriously, it can wait. There's nothing that serious that could risk your life," said Baker.

After students left they went to Doctors Hospital where they met with doctors and surgeons and talked to them about what they see on their end. This is put on by the chamber every year.

This won't be the last simulation for the Columbia County Sheriff's Office.

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