Driv­ing mes­sage home

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By MERE­ANA AUSTIN

No white cross has been placed on a road side in mem­ory of a Mata­mata Col­lege stu­dent for a few years.

The col­lege’s Stu­dents Against Drunk Driv­ing com­mit­tee hopes it will stay that way.

Last week, stu­dents cel­e­brated Stu­dents Against Drunk Driv­ing (SADD) week at Mata­mata Col­lege – an an­nual event at the school for many years.

The com­mit­tee, com­pris­ing 10 stu­dents, held ac­tiv­i­ties around the school dur­ing lunch time which en­cour­aged stu­dents to think about the reper­cus­sions of drink driv­ing.

Stu­dents took turns wear­ing fa­tal vi­sion gog­gles and com­mit­tee mem­bers dressed in black, de­liv­ered sta­tis­tics to classes to sym­bol­ise peo­ple who died due to drunk driv­ers.

Com­mit­tee leader, Shalee Watkins said she was pleased with the stu­dent in­ter­est dur­ing the week.

‘‘Mon­day’s fa­tal vi­sion gog­gles in­volve­ment went es­pe­cially well with the ju­niors.

‘‘ The fa­tal vi­sion gog­gles sim­u­lated be­ing drunk by what you could see.

‘‘This was to show ev­ery­one how dis­ori­ented and out of con­trol you be­come when you’ve had too much to drink,’’ she said.

Shalee said the main idea of the week was to raise aware­ness of the con­se­quences of drink driv­ing.

‘‘I don’t care if only one per­son re­alised the ef­fects of drink driv­ing. One per­son is more than none and that is what we as a com­mit­tee sim­ply aim to do,’’ she said.

‘‘Drink driv­ing is one hun­dred per cent pre­ventable so this is our way of telling young peo­ple like us that it is com­pletely avoid­able.

‘‘We also are push­ing the, plan be­fore you party as­pect, this year,’’ she said.

The amount of young peo­ple dy­ing due to drink driv­ing in New Zealand is over rep­re­sented and as of Au­gust 1, the min­i­mum driv­ing age in­creased to 16 and on Au­gust 7 any driver un­der the age of 20 has a zero al­co­hol limit.

On Fri­day there was a bal­loon re­lease in mem­ory of ev­ery­one killed by drink driv­ers.

There was also a sev­enth form mufti day where stu­dents dressed up as emer­gency ser­vice peo­ple. All pro­ceeds were do­nated to the lo­cal fire sta­tion.

Mata­mata Col­lege Gateway stu­dent Crash car­nage: Stu­dents Against Drunk Driv­ing com­mit­tee mem­ber Clarice Rigg sits in a man­gled car fol­low­ing a reen­act­ment of a car ac­ci­dent caused by drink driv­ing.

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