Chesterfield teens learn dangers of texting while driving

Posted at 5:33 PM, Apr 02, 2014
and last updated 2014-04-02 17:33:34-04

CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WTVR) -- Some Chesterfield teens got to experience firsthand how dangerous texting and driving can be Wednesday as part of distracted driving awareness month.

State Farm and Drive Smart Virginia teamed up to bring a driving simulator to James River High School.

Students sat in the driver's seat, put on the visor with smartphone in hand to see if they could successfully send a text while behind the wheel. Many of the teens failed.

Organizers said even though the experience is virtual, it is an example of a hard reality.

”Life doesn't have a reset button like the video game,” said Brent Vandell. “This is a real thing that can hurt them and somebody else.”

It is illegal to text and drive in Virginia. In fact, Virginia State Police ticketed over 500 drivers for texting between July 1 and Dec. 31, 2013.

The CDC said more than 3300 people were killed in crashes involving a distracted driver in 2011.

Sign the W82TEXT pledge, a grassroots effort from CBS 6 and Emroch and Kilduff to raise awareness about the dangers of texting while driving.