USA: NSE Hosts ‘Save a Life’ Tour
The “Save a Life” drunk driving awareness tour visited Naval Station Everett (NSE) July 15.
A drunk driving simulator and general information on driving under the influence (DUI) was used to educate Sailors and civilians at NSE on the dangers of drinking and driving.
The Save a Life Tour, operated by Kramer Edutainment and based out of Grand Rapids, Mich., is described on its website as a “National High Impact Alcohol Awareness Program.” The tour visits military bases, schools and other institutions in order to inform and educate on the deadly effects of drinking and driving.
“I think there is kind of a distinction from a prevention program, because it is awareness,” said Andrew Gras, a member of the Save a Life Tour road crew. “Just making people aware of the consequences of [drunk driving], and not just saying don’t do it … making sure that people are thinking about the fact that it doesn’t just affect them.”
Members of the tour brought a coffin, anti-DUI videos, an electronic survey and other educational materials. They also brought a realistic drunk driving simulator for Sailors and civilians to try out.
“It’s an eye opener to realize how impaired you could really be without knowing it,” said Culinary Specialist 1st Class (SCW) Chad Dahlenburg, who participated in the drunk driving simulator.
The multi-million dollar simulator is designed to provide a realistic experience of what it is like to drive a car under the influence of alcohol. It consists of three television screens (to simulate panoramic vision), a car seat, pedals, steering wheel, and other realistic motor vehicle controls.
The simulator runs using advanced software meant to recreate the impaired faculties of a drunk driver. The reactions in the steering and pedals of the car are delayed, which is designed to simulate the slowed reaction time of a drunk driver.
“It gives people a chance to drunk drive from a sober perspective,” said Gras. “We get the car drunk as opposed to getting the people drunk, so it lets them see how much focus and concentration it actually takes to try to control a car, especially when they have these delayed reactions they are fighting.”
The visit to NSE is part of a West Coast tour of military bases, including Joint Base Lewis-McCord, Naval Base Kitsap, Camp Pendleton and other installations.
Press Release, July 17, 2013; Image: US Navy