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Nordonia High School tackles distracted driving a bit differently

Safe decisions week highlights safe driving
Posted at 1:38 PM, Oct 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-18 13:38:31-04

Sitting right outside of Nordonia High School is a big, green, crashed car. It's a reminder for the 1,200 students who walk in and out of the doors every day that deadly accidents can happen at any time.

That reminder is a part of the "Safe Decisions Week" that the district is hosting, along with Jill Gaba from State Farm and Ohio Sports Chiropractors.

It isn't just telling the students how to make good decisions, or why you should make them, it's about showing them.

The high school students can trickle into the gymnasium during lunchtime and try out different activities. The activities include impaired driving simulators, a virtual reality driving experience, and letting the students get in a roadster with impaired goggles on.

The hands-on experience is something school leaders hope the students will take with them long after they graduate.

"We have great kids and our kids do listen to us when we talk to them," said Casey Wright, the principal of Nordonia High School. "But, sometimes when you’re in that car and you’re faced with that decision whether to send a text message...or late on a Friday night whether I should be driving or not, they’re not necessarily thinking about what Mr. Wright said to them, but they are remembering that experience they had this week at our school."

The activities concentrate on dangerous driving — situations like driving while impaired or sending a text message behind the wheel.

One in three teens admit to texting and driving, and the Highway Traffic Safety Administration finds that texting increases the risk of crashing by 23 times.

"I think this will definitely hit people more because it’s a way to get a hands-on experience without actually risking your life," said senior Brooke Tyukodi.

Wright says there have been tragedies throughout the entire district that affect the entire community. He says they'll do and try anything to protect the students.

"Safe Decisions Week" doesn't just concentrate on distracted driving, and the entire district is participating.