Teen drivers have heard the warnings not to text and drive, but a mock crash demonstration Wednesday was a chance for many of them to see the effects of not putting down their phones to drive.
Cars were mangled and the blood seemed way too real. In the mock crash at Greenbrier High School, nothing was sugarcoated.
The story was that a teenager, who was texting while driving, crashed into another car, killing one of his friends.
Area emergency crews and a medical helicopter responded with rescue gear in tow as the students looked on.
The sobering truth is this scene may not be so far from reality. Doctors at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital are especially concerned about the high number of teens injured in Robertson, Dickson and Wilson counties.
"These three counties have a significant number of teens coming into the hospital as a result of motor vehicle crashes, so we really decided to target these counties this year," said Purnima Unni, coordinator of Vanderbilt's Pediatric Trauma Injury Prevention Program.
Events like the mock crash are part of the hospital's Be in the Zone; Turn Off Your Phone campaign.
"Even talking to the teens about the graduated driver licensing law, because many of the teens don't even know if you are 18 or younger, you shouldn't even be on the phone," Unni said.
The lesson today was clear: texting while driving destroys lives.
Nationally, 17 teens die every day in car crashes. The mock crash at Greenbrier is just one of a dozen anti-texting activities planned at the school this year.
Next year, Vanderbilt plans to sponsor mock crashes in six Middle Tennessee counties.
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