After some last-minute improvising due to rain, members of West Feliciana Parish Fire Protection District 1, Hospital Emergency Medical Services and the West Feliciana Sheriff’s and Coroner’s offices and students from West Feliciana High School performed a mock car crash scenario in the football stadium parking lot April 13.
The “Sudden Impact” mock crash demonstration is designed to teach the consequences and realities associated with distracted and drunken driving.
The presentation included students in the roles of victims and members of the WFHS emergency medical responder class performing duties of first responders. Firefighters, deputies and paramedics participated as if an actual accident had occurred.
In the scenario, a pickup truck with an impaired driver crashed broadside into a car of female students returning home from prom.
One passenger was pronounced “dead” at the scene and covered by a sheet, while three others were trapped and eventually extricated from their mangled vehicle with the jaws of life tool and transported to the hospital.
As part of the exercise, family members came to the scene, and the pickup driver was arrested and hauled off to jail.
Paramedic Chris McBeth coordinated the role players, realistic makeup and costumes. Members of the WFHS media club filmed the scene so that it could be viewed later by the high school’s student body during an assembly.
“We do this right before prom season, and our hope is that seeing the scene firsthand will stick in the students’ minds long after driver safety statistics and lectures have been forgotten,” said West Feliciana Fire Chief James Wood.
Wood said this is the second year his department has held the mock crash.
“We want to show teens the actual consequences of what it can be and the agencies that would respond on scene.”