PETERS TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — Last weekend, several North Hills High School students were involved in an accident on Thompson Run Road in Ross Township. At least one student was critically hurt.
Ross Township Police say an accident reconstruction team is still looking into the crash. Once it’s finished, charges are likely to be filed because police believe alcohol was a factor.
Trying to prevent another crash like this is the reason why students from another school spent the day at Canonsburg Hospital in Washington County.
Students from Peters Township staged a simulation of the fallout from a teenage accident.
The students filmed the scenes for a Students Against Drunk Driving video that they will be shown prior to the prom.
“Unfortunately, every year, thousands of kids between the ages of 18-21 die from underage drinking, and prom season is a particular vulnerable time for this,” said Kathleen Latouf, the medical director of Canonsburg Hospital’s emergency department.
Statistics show that roughly a third of all fatal teen accidents involving alcohol occur between April and June, the peak of prom season.
A survey by AAA found 41 percent of teens said it was likely they or their friends would use drugs or alcohol on prom night.
“Some of the cases that stick with us in the emergency department are the sad ones, the 16-, 17-year-old kids that come in as a result of a trauma that could be completely prevented,” said Latouf.
The hope is by staging these mock accidents, teenagers will open their eyes to the dangers they face every time they get behind the wheel.
“I think the message we’re trying to get across is that you won’t think it will happen until it does. And you never think it will happen to you until it does,” said Mara Rayburg, a Peters Township High School senior.