Andes students learn from staged accident
By Julia Green
These days when you see a teenager, he or she is likely to be utilizing some sort of electronic device. iPod earbuds in the ears, thumbs typing away madly at a cell phone or PDA keys, face illuminated by the screen of a laptop computer. Such is the culture of the generation.
Perhaps the most dangerous part of this new tech age is the fact that electronic communication has become the new “walking and chewing gum” metaphor: any kid who’s anybody can walk and text – or drive and text – at the same time.
Such was the topic of Andes senior Rachel Andrews’ senior high school project last Friday, when she staged a mock accident on grounds behind the Andes Firehall to illustrate the dangers of driving while texting. The demonstration was attended by all Andes students in grades five through 12.
The mock accident included ambulance crews, a Life Net helicopter from Sidney and a car that was ultimately pried open by the Jaws of Life, the hydraulic rescue tool utilized by emergency rescue crews to permit extrication of crash victims from vehicles. In the staged incident, fellow Andes senior Karli Tait portrays the teenage driver who is driving while texting – and isn’t wearing a seat belt – and hits fellow Andes student Mariah Ruff, who is helmetless bicycle rider. Tait “suffers” head and chest injuries while Ruff has simulated head injuries and a broken arm.
Andrews is the daughter of Emergency Medical Technician Lori Andrews, and many members of her family are involved with the Andes Fire Department and Emergency Squad.
The senior project is required as a prerequisite for graduation as part of the Andes Central School curriculum.