Putting distracted driving in perspective using simulator - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Putting distracted driving in perspective using simulator

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WAVERLY (KWWL) -

Students at Wartburg College got a lesson in distracted driving Thursday.

UNITE, a national health and wellness organization, brought a driving simulator to campus to show students what it's like to drive drunk and drive while texting.

With a car, a virtual head set, and a lot of hardware students at Wartburg College got the chance to find out what it's like to drink and drive and text and drive without facing the long arm of the law.

"We're really trying to get the word out there about how dangerous it is to drink and drive at any level and texting and driving too is just as dangerous and just education and awareness is what we're about," said Miranda Maxey, with UNITE.

While it looks like a video game, the results have a much bigger impact.

"It wasn't too hard driving until I got to the stop light and I couldn't really slow down in time. I couldn't even see the person until I was right up on top of him," said student Allen Engel.

To find out what it's like I decided to get behind the wheel and get out my cell phone.

"I just got this phone so this might be a little tricky."

And it didn't go well.

"You got swerving and you failed to stop at that light there."

"Well..."

"You couldn't even get your text message sent."

"Can I try it one more time?"

"Of course, yeah."

The second time around was better, but it still wasn't perfect.

"You got it this time just a little bit of swerving there," said Maxey.

"So how did I do, did I pass?"

"Two checks, you didn't pass."

"Swerving, yeah, failing to stop that was bound to happen."

With Iowa's law banning texting and driving that started this summer...more student's are surprised by the results.

"They look like a drunk driver. When you're on the road texting and swerving you look like you're a drunk driver and that really surprises people. They didn't know they did that especially when I hand them their ticket and they get to see all the things they didn't know they were doing wrong, it really makes them aware of how dangerous both are," said Maxey.

 

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