On Wednesday, October 26th, students gathered at the Henrico High bus ramp to witness a simulated car accident. The event, Project Impact, was spearheaded by VCU Medical Center (MCV) workers who desired to bring awareness to teenagers about some of the dangers of driving. Of the schools they visited, Henrico was fortunate enough to be one of them.
With MCV nurses, Henrico firemen, police officers, and 500 of our own students involved, the event was an elaborate one.
In the set-up car crash, one man was pronounced dead and the other was taken to the emergency unit of the hospital, but not before the driver of the car was tested for drunk driving. Some of the standard procedures for testing this include the walking in a straight line test and breathing into a breathalyzer.
On the football field, students watched a helicopter land (when one is in critical condition, helicopters are used for quick transportation).
Following this, everyone gathered at the gymnasium, which was the setting for the hospital. VCU nurses attempted to save the man using CPR and an IV drip, but they failed and tragedy ensued when the mother of the man learned of his passing.
The event became all the more realistic when a police officer who had actually lost both of his legs due to an accident with a truck spoke about safe driving. As he threw his prosthetic legs onto the gymnasium floor, the event came to an end, but the lessons taught from it, did not.
When Mr. Clexton, the Driver’s Education teacher at Henrico High, was asked about the most common mistakes made by young drivers today, he answered, “inexperience, over-confidence, and phone use/multi-tasking while at the wheel”.
Given these common blunders made by drivers, Mrs. Moody, a CFA theatre teacher and a proponent of Project Impact, hopes that “…students and teachers learned to be more aware of their own/their parents’ driving habits and the consequences of distracted driving.” It seems they did to Mr. Clexton, who spoke of the effectivity of the event. According to him, students “saw and experienced some serious situations and responded very appropriately.” Project Impact was even discussed in Mrs. Moody’s classes throughout the rest of the day.
Tyrone Hunt, Raina Chaber-Tully, Tiffany Williams, Daquan Wiggans, AJ Harris, Mrs. Moody and Mrs. Engel, were key in the execution of the event.