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Arrive Alive Tour aims to teach Decatur students about dangers of distracted driving

by Michael Eckels | September 23, 2022 at 5:00 a.m.
Sunshine Thor gets her turn behind the wheel of a driving simulator Sept. 16 in the parking area at Decatur High School. The simulator is part of the Arrive Alive Tour that teaches future drivers the dangers of distracted driving habits. (NWA Democrat-Gazette/Mike Eckels)

DECATUR -- Two members of the Arrive Alive Tour were at Decatur High School on Sept. 16 with a high-technology simulation device in an effort to educate students on the dangers of distracted and impaired driving.

Each Decatur middle and high school student had a chance to sit in the driving simulator. The students put on a pair of virtual reality goggles which are wired to a computer system in the rear seat of the vehicle. The goggles pick up movement by the driver. Outside the vehicle, a "Passenger-Eye View" monitor enables students to see what the driver is experiencing.

After the experience, the driver can see a drone-eye view of the entire experience.

At the end, one of the facilitators issues a mock ticket "explaining the ramification of their simulator experiences," according to information from Arrive Alive.

Car crashes are the number one cause of death for everyone in the U.S. ages 5-34, with teens crashing three times more often than any other age group according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says texting while driving makes a driver 23 times more likely to crash and about six times more likely to cause an accident than driving while intoxicated.

Sending or receiving a text takes a driver's eyes from the road for an average of 4.6 seconds, the equivalent of driving the length of an entire football field blind when traveling at 55 mph, according to the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says texting and driving kill 11 teens each day.

Print Headline: Arrive Alive Tour visits Decatur High School


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