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PUNXSUTAWNEY â€” PAHS students got an eyeful Friday morning through the annual â€śProm Promiseâ€ť mock crash, sponsored by the schoolâ€™s SADD Club.
Tpr. Bruce A. Morris, Ridgway-based Pennsylvania State Police community relations officer, said the simulated crash helps to illustrate the message of the dangers of drinking and driving.
Morris said many young people donâ€™t understand what happens from the initial impact of a crash through possible dealings with the court system. The mock crash brings home as to how long it takes; how many people are involved; and the response time.
Morris said it sends the message that an accident scene is a pretty scary place.
Movies and TV programs donâ€™t tell the entire story as a live event does, he said.
â€śTo actually see it close to home â€” with people you know and not just the students that were involved with the crash â€” and knowing the people responding â€” whether itâ€™s the fire department, the ambulance or police personnel â€” personalizes the event even more.â€ť
Senior SADD member Devon Vallies said it also shows what can happen when someone is drinking and driving.
Vallies said that this yearâ€™s mock crash seemed more intense than previous events, as the student actors appeared to be more believable in their roles.
Bridget States, who co-advises SADD with Brigette Trusal, said the mock crash could not take place without the assistance of the members of the Punxsutawney Fire Department; Jefferson County EMS; Punxsutawney Borough Police, PSP-Punxsutawney/Ridgway; and Rebuckâ€™s South Side Service Towing for providing the wrecked cars for the event and clean-up.
States said in her mind, the â€śProm Promiseâ€ť event must have some impact on students, citing vehicle crashes the weekend of prom are a rarity.