West Harrison students use graphic lesson to promote safe drivin - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

West Harrison students use graphic lesson to promote safe driving

The mock crash at West Harrison High School was a graphic reminder of what distracted or drunk driving can lead to. (Photo source: WLOX) The mock crash at West Harrison High School was a graphic reminder of what distracted or drunk driving can lead to. (Photo source: WLOX)
HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

It’s enough to scare you to safety.

This week, West Harrison High School student leaders put on a mock car crash and memorial service. The scenes were graphic lessons on what can happen when one is drunk or distracted while behind the wheel.

This lesson comes just in time for prom.

"A lot of people think they're too good to get in a car accident or things won't happen to them,” said student Ricky Raymond. "This mock car accident will open their eyes hopefully and let them know that it can happen to anyone."

McGwire Griffin played the role of the drunk driver who killed his friends. He said if this had happened in real life, he wouldn’t have been able to attend the service.

"It would be too hard," he said. "Like, how am I going to stare at all my other friends and know that I’m the reason why they’re gone?"

Driving under the influence isn’t the only problem students wanted to expose. Any type of cell phone use that creates distracted driving was another concern.

"It is really hard," said student Mackenzie Simmons. "Everyone is so involved in their phone and social media and Snapchat. But, we’re just trying to make everyone aware that these are real situations, and it can happen to you, and it can happen to your friends."

After the memorial service in the gym, things became even more real for the students. Students were led to witness the crash aftermath. First responders from Harrison County and Combat Readiness Training Center swarmed to the scene. Students found their friends mangled in the wreckage.

The dead were covered. The survivors were transported. The parents were distraught.

For Acadia Chaney, this wasn’t just an act.

"It happens every day to all types of kids all teenagers, young kids, their parents," she said. "So, it stays with me."

The results are some life-long lessons.

"I have class with, like, three of these kids, and it’s like what if something really does happen to them?" student Alyssa Gates asked. "I’d be heartbroken."

The program was student-created and led by the broadcast journalism class and members of the student council.

Copyright 2018 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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