Thursday, May 1, 2008

Every 15 Minutes

Every 15 minutes someone somewhere dies from an alcohol-related traffic accident, and our youth are especially susceptible. In order to make high schoolers dramatically aware of the dangers of drinking and driving, the California Highway Patrol sponsors a program called Every 15 Minutes through local high schools.

Today was the first day of the two day program at the Rosamond High School, the next town over from Mojave, and Mojave's Mercy Air 14 participated along with Kern Fire Station 15, Hall Ambulance, and of course the local CHP and Sheriff's office.

The program begins with a staged drunk driving head-on accident, with four of the high-schoolers participating, one of whom is "arrested" (complete with booking process!), and the other three are badly "injured" and have to be extricated. Two of the students' injuries were assessed as meeting trauma criteria, and so Mercy Air's 412 arrived on-scene at the school's football field, where the students were loaded aboard and flown off. In the script, one of them subsequently dies in the hospital, and so the second day of the program involves a funeral at the school. According to the reports of staff, today's accident, even though staged, and the emergency response to it, had a profound affect on the kids. Let's hope some lives were saved through this today!

If you want more information, please visit the CHP's program website, or you can download a PDF brochure at:

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