Mock distracted driving crash shows teens dangers behind the wheel

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Friday afternoon students at Northmor High School in Galion witnessed first-hand the dangers of distracted driving. The school held a mock crash in the parking lot. Teenagers huddled in the rain watching what can happen if they drive distracted.

Senior Lindsey Wiseman played a role in the training exercise. She wanted to take part because she hopes it makes a lasting impression.

Lindsey's cousin, Jordan Wiseman also played a role; dead on the hood of a car. He witnessed the mock distracted driving crash as a sophomore, the day before he got his driver's license and said the images stayed with him.

"It kind of sits in your stomach like, ooh, if I don't take this seriously…driving…then there are going to be consequences," said Wiseman.

The Ohio Highway Patrol said in 2016, nearly 14,000 Ohio drivers crashed while they were distracted.

Twenty-six of those drivers were involved in fatal crashes.

From 2014 to 2015, the number of reported distracted drivers jumped 11 percent. In 2016, the number rose again five percent.

Educators hope memories of the mock crash will encourage teens to put their phones down.

"Just seeing someone they care about in a tragic situation. I think that hits home. It's pretty powerful to them," said Northmor Superintendent Chad Redmon.

Ohio Highway Patrol troopers, Morrow County Sheriff's Deputies, and volunteer firefighters put on the mock crash. They said they hope the teens who witnessed the exercise will make smart choices so that they never have to be rescued.