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Mock crash shows students the real dangers of drinking while driving

By HILARY LANE

MIDDLEVILLE, N.Y. (WKTV) - It's the season of proms, after-prom celebrations, and graduation parties - a time when the number of students who drink alcohol skyrockets.

Teachers at West Canada Valley Central School in Middleville say that it is the perfect time to stage a car crash in order to make a bold statement about the dangers of getting behind the wheel while intoxicated.

During the demonstration, ambulance services, New York State Police, along with police and fire crews from Poland and Newport, all worked to pry intoxicated students out of the cars and treat them for injuries. Two students 'died' in the demonstration.

"We just feel it is very important for the kids to understand the seriousness of drinking and driving or getting into the vehicle with someone that has been drinking," said Donna Gookins, Students Against Drunk Driving (SADD) adviser. "This really makes it come alive for them and it is something they actually get emotional about."

Gookins said she hopes that this program resonates with the students because the program is in danger of being cut next year due to shortfalls in the budget.

"It really makes you see how bad something could be and how serious car accidents are and how your choices could affect things down the road," said Meghan Louis, a senior at West Canada Valley.

"When it's right there out front of our school, you realize it could happen to anyone of us," said fellow senior Jennie Maxwell. "So that is kind of the reality of it all."

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