Cass Lake Bena High School hosted a surprise, mock car crash to give students a realistic reminder of the consequences of drinking and driving prior to parties that accompany each year’s prom.
Bryan Beef Sathre, a teacher at Cass Lake Bena High School, decided to organize the event to increase teens awareness about the consequences of drinking and driving. “I could stand up in front of the students all day long and say don’t drink and drive,” he said. “But when they get to see it hands on, and they get to see people working and their peers injured with makeup, its real.”
One student who watched the mock car crash said the the graphic images will stay with him long after it’s over. “I think it was pretty intense,” said Ryan Baird. “It really touches home, and it’s kind of a big thing to watch out for I think.”
For participants involved in the crash, the exercise provided a blatant reminder of how real these events can be. Damon Staples said, “We’ve lost a student already to drunk driving and it will probably hit home, especially to our students.” Terence O’Connor, the Leech Lake Ambulance Director, said, “Last drill we had one gal going through the motions until they zipped her up in a body bag. Then she kind of said, ‘This is real. This could happen to me.'”
The demonstration was also a way to teach students who want to become emergency responders what life is really like out in the field. One student , Katherine Howard, got the chance to ride on the ambulance and treat injuries at the scene.
“I get to go out and treat injuries,” Howard said. “Even if we’re not actually treating, we’re gonna be verbalizing it and pretending that we are to make it as real as possible.” And even though the accident is fake, it still makes the message very real. Drinking and driving could cost you your life.