Students learn dangers of texting and driving

CHESTERFIELD, VA (WWBT) -- For the next two days, high school students at James River High School are getting a real life, simulated, lesson of the dangers of texting and driving.

It's the sound of squealing wheels that James River High kids heard more today  than they probably ever want to.

All thanks to a texting and driving simulator, that ended with almost every kid crashing -- behind the wheel.

It started out with many of them -- like Jacob Nott -- thinking everything would be fine.

"You would see you're going straight and then you would look down and text and you'd crash in an instant," Nott said.

"I was speeding a third of the time and changing lanes and I didn't even know I was doing it," said Jarred Ransom.

The harsh reality that could prove to be deadly. A decision to text and drive, before you even get behind the wheel.

"You really think you're not going to get into a crash, that it's not going to be you. But, one day it will be you," Ransom said.

That's exactly the message that James River High Principal Jeff Ellizk wants to get across. "It is through this real life learning experience that our students will make the decision not to text, not to talk on the cell phone," he said.

It is illegal to text and drive in Virginia, but it is a secondary offense. That means you have to be pulled over for doing something else illegal, like speeding, to get a ticket for texting and driving.

AAA Mid-Atlantic says it's trying to change that law.

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