Students at Pearl River Central participate in prom DUI program

Published 4:02 pm Tuesday, April 25, 2023

by WXXV25 Janae Jordan

Students at Pearl River Central got a look at what could happen if they partake in underage drinking and driving during prom season.

Prom season is here and students at Pearl River Central got a first hand look at the dangers of underage drinking and driving.  Don Mieger with the Carriere Fire Department said, “We put on what is known as ESADD, emergency service against drunk driving, and what it is is a head on collision scenario that first responders perform during prom season to make students aware of the consequences of drinking and driving.”

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The students acted as the crash victims while members from the local emergency units, coroner, funeral home, and air rescue participated in the scenario to make it more realistic. Student Caleb Dyess said, “It’s definitely eye opening for everyone who saw this today because it is like a real case scenario for somebody who is actually doing things that they shouldn’t be doing.”

Student Nia English said, “It was a fun bit, but it really holds an important message as in don’t drink and drive. Even if you have one beer, don’t get behind the wheel.”

According to the CDC, about a third of alcohol related teen traffic fatalities happen between April and June, peak prom season. “We see this on a regular basis. I’ve been doing this for almost thirty years now and I think it has a huge impact. Fortunately, in our fire district we have not had to my recollection, we have not had a drinking and driving incident around prom and I contribute it back to this presentation that we do.”

After the mock crash was cleaned up, students heard from guest speaker Dwight Owens, who was a victim of a DUI involved wreck. “I’m in this chair due to someone else’s negligence, due to someone else choosing to drink and drive. Because of a decision they made, now my life is turned upside down. So, I want them to be able to think about Dwight before they make that decision.”

Owens says he hopes his story and the mock crash can impact the students. “When you are able to see it and you are able to see the devastation that can occur in something like this and I think it hits home.”


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