ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — South Beloit Fire, Police, and EMS conducted a mock crash at South Beloit High School on Friday to raise awareness of drinking and driving ahead of prom.
Firefighters have conducted the drill every Friday before prom for the last five years.
“When people start drinking, they think like, ‘Oh, I’ll be fine. I’m not I’m not too intoxicated.’ But once they really get on the road and start driving, they’re like, ‘Oh, shoot, I can’t see. I don’t know where I’m going,'” said senior Trinity Mesch.
The crash scene was staged just in front of the school.
“It kind of gives kids a warning or an example of what it would actually be like, and how scary it can be, and how serious the situation can really be,” senior Tyiion Jackson said.
South Beloit Firefighter Austin Edgington agreed, saying, “It’s a great experience for the students, to see the possible repercussions of their choices for prom night, or distracted driving, or driving while under the influence of different things. So, it’s an incredible opportunity for us to come out [and] train…but also let the students experience it.”
Students played the parts of the drunk driver who gets arrested, the injured passengers, and the victim who dies in the crash.
“It was definitely fun to act it out, but I know it can be a scary situation in reality. [I really hope] no one gets into a car accident tomorrow,” Jackson said.
Mesch hopes the mock crash event will help her peers see the consequences of drunk driving.
“I’m hoping it kind of put something in their head, like ‘what could really happen?'” she said. “I’m hoping that everyone knows there are people to call. You can call an adult, you can call the fire department. There are people to call, instead of driving yourself.”
The fire department plans to continue the tradition each year.