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Belmont Police Sober Prom Event
Contact: Captain Patrick Halleran
The Belmont Police, in cooperation with the Belmont, San Mateo & Foster City Fire Departments, American Medical Response and the San Mateo County Coroner’s Office, held a two-day “Sober Prom” event on Thursday, April 24th and Friday, April 25th, 2014 at Carlmont High School.
The program was designed to raise the awareness of teens to the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol and/or other controlled substances. A major part of the program was a simulation of an alcohol-related accident scene, which occurred in the Senior parking lot of the school on Thursday.
The simulated collision included an emergency response to the school by Police, Fire and AMR, and a Stanford Life Flight helicopter. Student participants, with simulated injuries, were treated by rescue personnel and the Coroner handled simulated fatalities. Police Officers investigated and arrested the student "drunk driver". The student “drunk driver” was then taken to the Belmont Police Department to be “booked for drunk driving". At the end of the day, students who participated in the staged accident were transported to a local hotel for an overnight student retreat. The retreat simulated the separation from friends and family. The story of the staged collision, and its aftermath, was filmed by students and the video "CHOICES" is posted on the Belmont Public Safety YouTube Channel (www.youtube.com/belmontpublicsafety).
Today, an assembly was hosted by project coordinators, who guided the audience through the devastating effects of losing a loved one due to a dangerous decision. “In most cases, important life lessons are learned through experience. However, when the audience is teens and the topic is drinking and driving, experience is not the teacher of choice,” said Belmont Police Chief Dan DeSmidt. “We hope that this powerful program will challenge the students to think about drinking, using drugs, personal safety, and the responsibility of making mature decisions when lives are involved,” Chief DeSmidt added.
Scene From the Simulated Collision