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Rules of the Road: Teen drinking PSA

4:24 PM, Jul 27, 2011   |    comments
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A group of students in Roane County is working to teach their peers about the dangers of drinking and driving.

In a public service announcement, students in the Roane County Anti-Drug Coalition's "CAMP" program outline the grim realities of substance abuse.

The Children's Attitude Motivation Program for at-risk students includes physical fitness and classroom based instruction.

"This year we focused on community service, so they did a variety of projects throughout the county, and the PSA was one of those projects," said Sarah Stevenson, Executive Director of the Roane County Anti-Drug Coalition.

Mercedes Murphy, 16, wrote the PSA. It was shot and edited by local filmmaker Brooks Benjamin.

In the video, Murphy's character rides in a car with a group of friends as they drink alcohol and pressure her to join. As she considers their offers, the car passes a series of signs bearing statistics on the dangers of substance abuse.

Messages include "teen alcohol abuse kills about 6,000 people every year," and "drunk driving kills over 12,000 people every year."

"It was a lot of fun filming it," Murphy said. "The statistics are always get me. It's shocking how many people die from this stuff."

Now the group is working to share the PSA with the Governor's Highway Safety Office in the hopes of reaching more peers.

"Peer to peer education and information, I think that's important. I think they listen to their peers more than they listen to adults," Stevenson said.

The group at CAMP is already listening carefully.

"After hearing all this stuff from boot camp, I know that's something I would never even think of," Murphy said.

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