DPD Guides Area Students Through “Teen Maze”

Even as a teenager, making a bad choice can affect you for the rest of your life. Choices have consequences, good and bad. And making the decision to drive after drinking, using drugs, or while distracted can have serious consequences that can last a lifetime.

That’s the message presented to teens navigating their way through the “Teen Maze” this week in Dalton.  The event is put on for students in the Dalton, Whitfield County, and Murray County school systems at the North Georgia Fairgrounds.  It is coordinated by the school systems and also the Whitfield/Murray County Drug Free Coalition and the Whitfield Family Connection.

As they arrive, students hear a presentation about drunk driving from someone who was involved in a drunk driving crash and someone who was permanently injured in a crash.  From there, they are brought outside to the scene of a mock car crash caused by a DUI.  Actors play the driver and victims while police officers and first responders arrive at the crash scene.  As one of the victims is pronounced dead at the scene and another is pulled from the wreck by firefighters, another actor portrays the driver as he is placed in handcuffs by a responding officer.

From there, students are taken inside where doctors and nurses from Hamilton Medical Center play out the scene in a mock-up of an emergency room as the victim is brought to the “hospital.”

Students also take a ride through the “Fatal Vision” course with Dalton Police officers and Whitfield County deputies. Students are given goggles that simulate alcohol impairment. Officers have them “walk the line” as they would during a roadside sobriety test and also drive a golf cart through a cone course to show how difficult it is to drive while impaired.  Dalton State College Police also have a cone course set up for students to attempt to text and drive a golf cart, with similarly disastrous results for the orange cones.

For more information on the “Teen Maze”, click here to visit the event’s website.

Below: A speaker addresses students from Morris Innovative High School at Wednesday morning’s “Teen Maze” event; students watch as actors perform a dramatization of a drunk driving crash complete with police officers, firefighters, and EMS responding; Officer Brandon Daugherty rides along with a high school student wearing goggles that simulate alcohol impairment on the Dalton Police Department’s “Fatal Vision” simulator

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