Howe Sound Secondary students put to the distracted driving test

ICBC and Squamish first responders show students effects of impaired driving

On May 22, Howe Sound Secondary students were zigzagging dangerously across the parking lot behind the Squamish school.

In their condition, none would pass a roadside-screening test for impaired driving. Thankfully, none were really behind the wheel. ICBC, along with local first responders, was at the school to bring awareness to the impacts drugs and alcohol can have on driving a vehicle under the influence.

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The course, open to all students at the high school, included a distracted driving obstacle course, alcohol-vision goggles and the new cannabis-impaired goggles. Students tried — and failed — to manoeuvre the courses.

Harvey Kooner, a road safety and community coordinator for ICBC, said more than 200 students took part.

Although drivers between 16 and 21 years old only make up seven per cent of all licensed drivers, ICBC stats show the age group makes up 23 per cent of speeding-related crashes ending in injury or death, 14 per cent of impaired drivers and 14 per cent of distracted drivers, ending in injury or death.

John Westhaver, a vehicle incident survivor, also spoke to the Grade 12 students about how drunk driving changed his life.

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