Oskaloosa High School seniors got a graphic look at the consequences of drunken driving Friday morning at the high school parking lot. The Mock Accident is an annual event held before graduation to make seniors think before they contemplate drinking and driving. The members of the People Helping Lab Class teamed up with the Mahaska County Sheriff’s Office, the Oskaloosa Fire Department, Mahaska Ambulance, Oskaloosa Community Schools, Bates Funeral Home and KBOE to stage the event.
Groups of seniors sat on bleachers while they watched their fellow students, firefighters, law enforcement and ambulance personnel reenact a two-vehicle, drunken driving accident scene. The program was nearly an hour long. “We’ve been doing it longer than anyone in the state — 20-plus years,” OHS teacher Scottie Moore said. Moore said that Mahaska County Sheriff’s Deputy Don DeKock started the program.
“We have not had a student die in Oskaloosa High School as a result of drunken driving since we started doing this,” DeKock said.
The Mock Accident did not have a speaker give an introduction. The audience was greeted by an accident scene — complete with two wrecked cars and injured passengers. Law enforcement officers, firefighters and ambulance personnel responded to the accident as they would to a real-world accident.
They rescued trapped passengers and stabilized them before they boarded an ambulance. The EMS first-responders provided aid as they would to real life accident victims.
In the accident scenario, two teens were killed and one was paralyzed as a result of drunken driving, DeKock said. A hearse from Bates Funeral Home was at the scene to transport a deceased motorist. More students re-enacted a jail scene where the convicted drunken driver was sentenced to a long stay in prison. Others staged a funeral scene where teens eulogized their deceased friends.
The program ended with audience members placing roses on the casket of one of the accident victims. DeKock said the education program relies on donations and volunteers. The cars are donated and the firefighters and ambulance personnel contribute their time and equipment, he said. DeKock said that he had input from students during the past 20 years to improve the presentation.
For more on this story, check out today’s Oskaloosa Herald
Photo provided by the Oskaloosa Herald.