New approach curbs teen DUI - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

New approach curbs teen DUI

October 17, 2002

Albany- Florida paramedic Joe McCluan hopes his strong words will make teens think twice.

Homecoming at Deerfield Windsor High School is a night of fun and tradition. But, it's also a time when some teens drink, and it can be a deadly combination.

Thursday, Deerfield Windsor seniors got a wake up call. Paramedic Joe McCluan has been at the scene of many gruesome car crashes. "How about you help me out," he asked a student. "What's coming out of this dude's head? His brains. Had this guy had his seat belt on, he would have been held in place."

"It gives them a reality check," said McCluan. "They are not invincible."

And he shared some shocking pictures of people killed in wrecks involving drugs and alcohol. "Every one is real, every picture drugs and alcohol played a part, every picture a car crash and person involved didn't have seat belt on, what every picture shares in common, every person you saw up there is dead."

McCluan has taught this course to more than 25,000 students, and he doesn't leave much to the imagination. "Jake made a decision to drink, Jake made a decision to drive."

Here, McCluan gave a play by play of a head on collision. "Jake's face impacted a windshield, face first, at 45 miles per hour-- rip, tear, and lacerate. He comes up and out of glass, its like a thousand razor blades ripping his face."

It's a new approach to the standard "Don't drink, Don't drive", and teens say it makes them think. "I think it will but maybe not just me other people who want to drink and drive it will stop them more."

Paramedic Joe McCluan works with Florida Safe Incorporated, teaching students about the realities of drunk driving.


posted at 4:20PM by dave.miller@walb.com