By Tiffany Pelt - email
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) – Lamesa High School students got a crash course in texting and driving, literally. Thursday students had the opportunity to participate in a texting and driving simulation to see just how deadly it can be.
The Fully Wreck-Less Team, Chamber of Commerce, and Spike Dykes Ford sponsored the event. "We just need to realize that it really can hurt someone or kill someone," said Lamesa High School student Leslie Ann Prather, also a member of the Fully Wreck-Less Team.
As the teens took their seat behind the wheel they put on virtual reality goggles, seeing a road with on-coming traffic, curves, and sometimes construction work. Most lasted less than a minute as they tried to text their teacher their last name and the words "Lamesa Tornadoes".
Prather didn't do so well. "I already knew I wasn't going to be able to text because it takes a lot of concentration, because you don't know what's coming up. I started to do a new message, and started to do my last name and I already crashed," she said.
Other students tested out the effects of driving drunk. Each teen put in a number of drinks within a certain amount of hours, whether they were male or female, and then their size. A B.A.C number would be calculated and then the line of vision in the virtual goggles would be adjusted to how "drunk" the teen was.
The result was the same. Each student either crashed or was "pulled over" by the operator John Kurywchak. He's taken driving simulators to 40 states, for the last three years. "Typically every year 6,000 people die as a result of texting, another 540,000 people are injured as a result," said Kurywchak.
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