Drunk driv­ing sim­u­la­tor comes to Marys­town

MADD part­ners with NLC’s Re­spon­si­ble Choices pro­gram to set up course

The Southern Gazette - - FRONT PAGE - BY COLIN FAR­RELL THE SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE MARYS­TOWN, NL colin.far­rell@south­erngazette.ca

The Burin Penin­sula chap­ter of Moth­ers Against Drunk Driv­ing (MADD) Canada gave peo­ple an op­por­tu­nity to ex­pe­ri­ence the risks as­so­ci­ated with driv­ing while im­paired in a con­trolled en­vi­ron­ment Wed­nes­day.

The or­ga­ni­za­tion part­nered with the New­found­land Labrador Liqour Cor­po­ra­tion’s (NLC) Re­spon­si­ble Choices pro­gram to set up a pedal cart course in the Sobeys park­ing lot in Marys­town.

Driv­ers try­ing the course wore spe­cial gog­gles that im­paired their vi­sion, sim­u­lat­ing the ef­fects of al­co­hol.

Steve Breon of Safety 1st Driv­ing School was one of the peo­ple who tried the course.

“It com­pletely blows my mind how some­one could drink and drive, espe­cially af­ter do­ing an ob­sta­cle course like this when you’re only go­ing one kilo­me­ter an hour – I could never imag­ing be­ing be­hind the wheel of a ve­hi­cle or an ATV go­ing 90 or 100 (km/h),” he said.

Breon said the sim­u­la­tion would be an eye-open­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for any­one tak­ing part.

Breon used gog­gles that sim­u­lated im­pair­ment of ap­prox­i­mately three times the le­gal limit in the prov­ince.

“Your vi­sion def­i­nitely de­creased,” he said. “Just han­dling that lit­tle cart … be­came 10 times more dif­fi­cult. It com­pletely threw off your vi­sion.”

COLIN FAR­RELL/THE SOUTH­ERN GAZETTE

Steve Breon, owner of Safety 1st Driv­ing School, took a turn around the course. The gog­gles he was wear­ing at the time sim­u­lated a state of im­pair­ment three times over the le­gal limit in the prov­ince.

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