By mtjulietintern

Local emergency service agencies and Mt. Juliet High School officials teamed up Thursday to highlight the dangers of distracted and intoxicated driving as the school prepared for prom Saturday.

Mt. Juliet police and firefighters, Wilson County Emergency Management Agency and Vanderbilt University Medical Center LifeFlight, along with Mt. Juliet High School future health professionals class and drama students, put on a reality-based portrayal of a car crash and the subsequent response by first responders, emergency medical personnel and law enforcement.

The students received a firsthand experience of what they could be responsible for, including killing someone, possibly one of their friends, as well as arrested for crimes as serious as vehicular homicide.

The mock crash is also meant to serve as a reminder for parents and guardians to talk to their teens about the consequences of bad driving behavior.

“This weekend is supposed to be the best night of your life. This is not how you want it to end. I hope that each one of you will take a lesson from this exercise, use good judgment and do not drink,” said Mt. Juliet fire Chief Jamie Luffman.

According to a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study, 10 percent of all drivers 15 to 19 years old involved in fatal crashes were reported as distracted at the time of the crashes. Teens are the largest proportion of drivers who were distracted at the time of the crashes.

By Xavier Smith

xsmith@lebanondemocract.com