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Putting the brakes on drunk driving

The Parthenon

Published: Thursday, April 11, 2013

Updated: Thursday, April 11, 2013 00:04


Josie Landgrave | The Parthenon

Rachel Bishop, sophomore communication disorders major, wears DUI goggles and attempts to maneuver a golf cart through cones.

The Marshall University Students Against Destructive Decisions chapter encourages and educates students to steer clear of impaired driving. MU SADD hosted a driving under the influence goggles course Wednesday on Buskirk Field in cooperation with the West Virginia Governor’s Highway Safety Program and the Marshall University Police Department. The course allowed students, faculty and staff to experience driving while impaired safely and without fear of arrest. Participants wore impairment goggles while attempting to weave a golf cart through numerous traffic cones. The DUI goggles mimic the vision of individuals with blood alcohol levels ranging from .05 to .25.

According to the West Virginia Checkpoint Strike Force, someone dies from a drunk driving accident every 30 minutes, and drunk driving accounts for more than 300,000 injuries every year. MU SADD and law enforcement works to put the brakes on these statistics.

Beau Evans, MU SADD president, said the purpose of the course is to make students aware of the negative effects of impaired driving.

“Our mission is to promote the safety and well being of every student. This event was a fun way to get a serious message across to them,” Evans said. “We need to keep these issues in the forefront because it continues to be a growing problem.”

Rachel Bishop, sophomore communication disorders major, ran over three traffic cones in her attempt at the course.

“I thought I had cleared the cones, but I either completely missed them or trampled over them,” Bishop said. “It’s scary to think that I would probably never make it home if I was driving drunk.”

Mason Bartlett, sophomore music performance major, said his cruise around the field was an eye opening experience.

“I thought I would do really well, but there was two of everything,” Bartlett said. “I think this was a really good way to show people firsthand how dangerous drinking and driving can be.”

MU SADD and its partners continue to try and eliminate drunk driving by conducting DUI checkpoints and hosting several awareness events throughout the year.

Josie Landgrave can be contacted at

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