Police create project to give students close look at driving und - WNEM TV 5

Police create project to give students close look at driving under the influence

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(Source: WNEM) (Source: WNEM)
FREELAND, MI (WNEM) -

A new traffic safety project is giving participants an up-close look at what it’s like to get behind the wheel under the influence.

The hands-on project from the Michigan State Police puts you in the driver’s seat of a four-wheeled bike with impairment goggles.

The project uses roadster karts to simulate the experience of driving, while the goggles create the illusion of being under the influence.

“You actually are driving something, not playing a video game,” MSP Trooper Mark Burch said.

Burch leads the program and said it’s far more effective than the distracted driving simulators that are often used at local high schools.

“I do a lot of things at schools, a lot of teachings, but this is hands on. The kids can come here and experience it firsthand of how this truly impairs your ability to drive,” Burch said.

MSP said these goggles range in difficulty from just a normal legal drunk to super drunk and also under the influence of marijuana.

“They were a lot harder than I expected. I don’t think you actually realize how dangerous it is until you have them on,” said Harley Martinez, senior at Bay City Western.

Martinez said the experience was rather eye-opening for her, especially after using all three.

“This definitely, I think, would scare people away from driving drunk because you can barely drive these karts. How are you supposed to drive a car,” Martinez said.

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