4041.0: Tuesday, November 14, 2000 - 8:30 AM

Abstract #13286

Evaluation of a Youth Drunk Driving Simulator Program

Nancy Arlove Lapolla, BS and Angelo Salvucci, MD. Emergency Medical Services Agency, Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, 300 North San Antonio Road, Santa Barbara, CA 93110, (805) 681-5274, nlapoll@co.santa-barbara.ca.us

Evaluation of a Youth Drunk Driving Simulator Program

Objective: Alcohol use and driving by young people with little driving experience is a deadly combination. Our County's EMS Agency worked to prevent needless death and injuries by coordinating the "Neon Drunk Driving Simulator Program" for high school students. The study assessed the effectiveness of a "Drunk Driving Simulator" program that targeted high school students in Santa Barbara County.

Method: Dodge/Plymouth modified a Neon with an on-board computer that can be programmed to delay the car's steering and breaking response time, stimulating the slowed physical and mental response abilities of a driver under the influence of alcohol. Students from 10th and 11th grade social studies classes were selected to participate. A one-page pre and post survey was distributed. The survey consisted of multiple choice, open-ended and yes, no, maybe answers, plus two additional post-surveys questions, which related specifically to the event.

Results: Over 2000 students participated with 1800 students experiencing the simulator car either as a driver or as a passenger. (1067) Students completed 1067 pre- surveys and 532 post-surveys. After students experienced the prevention activities, survey results show a 13.9 % decrease in the number of students that would take a ride from an "assumed sober friend" and other safe ways to get home after drinking increased by 16.2%.

Conclusions: This "Drunk Driving Simulator" prevention program is an effective prevention strategy. The event was a high profile media event, which supports and expresses the community's norms against underage drinking and driving.

Learning Objectives: At the end of the session, the participant will be able to: List three elements of a successful prevention intervention. Describe a drunk driving simulator program. Develop an action plan to increase EMS personnel participation in DUI prevention programs

Keywords: Evaluation, DUI

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
Organization/institution whose products or services will be discussed: Dodge/Plymouth modified Neon Car and Mothers Against Drunk Drivers programs
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

The 128th Annual Meeting of APHA