The sirens and helicopters at Peters Township High School Tuesday were not a cause for alarm, but a warning to students looking forward to prom this weekend.
The school’s Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) club put on a mock crash in the parking lot, showing what could happen if students use drugs or alcohol on prom night.
“I think it’s very promising that there are kids that want to do good and show their fellow classmates you can still have fun without making bad decisions,” said Krysten Neff, a science teacher and sponsor of the SADD club.
Parents were also invited to Tuesday’s mock crash. They first watched a video in the auditorium that set the stage for the mock crash, showing the students drinking heavily at an after-prom party and crashing a car.
The scene picked up in the parking lot. Peters Township police, fire department and ambulance service arrived to demonstrate how they would handle the situation.
The “driver” was given a sobriety test and arrested. Other students were carried away on stretchers. Those who could still walk gave statements to police while they watched another friend loaded into a hearse, courtesy of Beinhauer Funeral Home.
Before the mock crash went on, students met with first responders so they would know what to expect.
“We did a fire practice about a month ago where the kids got to see the car get cut up in advance so they didn’t get nervous and they saw exactly how the process would go,” Neff said.
According to Neff, this is the first time the school district has held the mock crash in four years.
“It’s really exciting to have it at the new school for the first time, and the first time these kids have ever seen a mock crash because they were in middle school for the last one we did,” Neff said.