Fairfield Police and Fire Departments Stage Mock-Accident Dramatization for Sacred Heart University

News Story: December 21, 2007

On Wednesday, October 24, the Fairfield police and fire departments staged a mock drunk-driving accident at Sacred Heart University.

Student Government members organized the event and acted as victims. In addition to the fire and police personnel and vehicles, the staging—attended by more than 200 students—included the Jaws of Life, a hearse, an ambulance, SHU’s Department of Public Safety, and a Life Star helicopter that landed on a campus lawn.

“The purpose of the mock accident was to enable students to have an insight about what can happen when you drink and drive,” said Matt Telvi, Student Government president. “A lot of people showed emotions when they saw what the cars looked like and the people inside. It was very effective.”

The enactment featured a fictitious story of three students leaving campus to get food. Though they designate a sober driver, they get into a fatal accident with another car being driven under the influence of alcohol.

“I hope that the event opens their eyes to making the correct decision when they decide about drinking and driving, and what the consequences could be not only for them but for an innocent person,” said Jack Fernandez, director of Public Safety. “We also tried to impress that there are other avenues they can take to get home safely, such as a taxi, calling a friend who’s not intoxicated, or having a designated driver.”

After the dramatization, the Fairfield police let students don “beer goggles,” eyewear that simulates the visual impairments of being legally drunk, including blurred and double vision, and reduced peripheral perception. Students wearing the goggles tried to pass a roadside sobriety test and attempt target-shooting with a basketball.