BOWLING GREEN, Kentucky. Students in rural Wisconsin received shocking news one Wednesday morning. They were told that four of their peers had been killed in a texting and driving accident. Then, according to the Washington Post, about ten minutes after the announcement, administrators told students that the four students were really alive. The announcement had been part of an effort to get teens to consider their choices behind the wheel. According to the Washington Post, in 60% of teen car accidents, drivers were engaged in some form of distracted activity before the crash took place.
The exercise has the country asking whether school administrators went too far. Some parents and students felt that the exercise served as a much-needed wake up call. Some claim that statistics and lessons wouldn’t have been enough to get students talking about texting and driving. The announcement forced them to feel the real impact distracted driving causes.
Others claim that the exercise was insensitive. One student had an uncle who had died in a car accident. The family claims that the announcement showed a disregard to the students whose lives had actually been affected by car accidents. Some claim that the exercise went too far. Announcements of teen deaths were made throughout the day, with memorials. Some students and parents found this in poor taste. Others reported that they felt “numb” by the end of the day.
The sad fact, is that for many families and teens across the country, texting and driving accidents are not a drill. Teens are seriously injured and killed everyday due to texting and driving. Parents of teens who cause the accidents could be held responsible for paying damages to victims of their teens’ distracted driving. The Law Offices of Sowell, Stevenson, & Steidl, PLLC, have seen firsthand how devastating personal injuries resulting from car accidents can be to survivors and their families. For these families, texting and driving is no joke, no school drill, no mere “exercise.”
Seventeen Magazine wondered whether students learned anything from the lesson, other than that their administrators, teachers, and peers were capable of emotionally manipulating them. Was it an important life or death lesson, or a lesson in betrayal?
Many continue to disagree, but the school does admit that there were flaws in how the exercise was conducted. The school also said that had no intention of repeating the activity. There are, after all, many ways to educate teens about the dangers of texting and driving. Maybe the mistake was in thinking that using an emotionally manipulating fear tactic was the only way?
The best way to teach your teens about the dangers of texting and driving is to talk about it and to set a good example. Explain the life and death consequences involving choices made while driving. The financial, emotional, and physical consequences are simply not worth checking that last text.
Finally, if you or a loved one has been impacted by distracted driving, you may be able to seek justice for your injuries and losses. Visit https://www.ssslaw.net/ today to learn more about your rights and how you can raise awareness about the impact of texting and driving in your community.