MIAMI (WSVN) - First responders staged a DUI crash for students in Miami, Friday, as they attempt to prevent a real-life tragedy from taking place during prom season.
An assembly at Miami Northwestern High School students turned into a mock DUI drill. The demonstration began with a pretend dance with students dressed up in suits and gowns, but it would eventually take a deadly turn.
Students attending the prom night recreation described the rite of passage as an important step in their journey to adulthood. “It’s like the hype of the high school,” said senior Ariel Macon.
“The prom is, like, you’re basically an adult,” said junior Camari Jackson. “You go out and do what you want to do for the whole entire night.”
But being an adult for the night comes with some adult decisions for teens, just as many seniors have decided what they’ll be doing after high school.
“United States Navy. I’m going in as an intelligence specialist,” said Macon.
Seniors will still have plenty of decisions to make on prom night, like knowing when not to get behind a steering wheel. “That is very unsafe, and the wrong thing to do, when you drink and drive and use drugs on prom weekend,” said Miami Fire Rescue Capt. Carlos Garcia.
Garcia knows firsthand the outcome of dangerous prom night choices. “We’re tired of seeing this,” he said.
Whether it’s drinking and driving or texting and driving officials said it’s simply not worth the risk. “We basically tell them, ‘Don’t make the mistake,'” said Garcia.
The mock party at Friday’s mock drill came to a crashing end, as a wailing fire truck approached a realistic crash scene, complete with shattered windshields and fake blood.
“We have a crash scene where there’s a deceased [person] on the scene,” said Garcia.
Students also took in a mock field sobriety test and funeral procession. The goal is to show teens, up close and in their face, the real-life consequences of prom night decisions.
Officials said these are lessons parents should heed as well. “Parents, please talk to your kids,” said Garcia.
The mock drill’s organizers said they hope their message of caution and sound judgment hits home so that students are able to come back home safely after the prom.
“Your whole life’s set out and just this one little instant can mess it all up,” said Macon.
While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that teen drinking and driving crashes have drastically decreased over the past few decades, more than two million teens are involved in DUI incidents in the U.S. every month.
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