MPD performs Fatal Vision at BCHS

Published 10:26 am Thursday, March 31, 2022

On March 29 and 30, Middlesboro Police Department performed the Fatal Vision program for students at Bell County High School.

Back in 1997, Robin Venable created the Fatal Vision program through Middlesboro High that is still performed by the Middlesboro Police Department today.

K9 Officer Nicholas Capps, Sgt. Jeremiah Johnson, Officer Bucky Harris, Officer Jacob Quillen, and Officer Hunter Marcum informed students about what is it like to walk and drive under the influence with a pair of goggles that allow them to see what it is like to be impaired.

Middlesboro Police officers informed students of the risks of driving under the influence. – Photo submitted

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“There is a driving part and a standard field sobriety test. Officers conducted the standard field sobriety test with the goggles on to show impairment and without,” Capps said, adding that this allowed the students to see what it is like to walk and drive impaired and to understand the risks. After the sobriety tests, students moved to the driving portion and were able to drive a golf cart through the course set up by the officers. They will go through the marked course with and without the goggles.

With prom season making being near, Sabrina Cross with Gear Up said they wanted to inform the students of the risks of drinking and driving. Bell County High School has offered this program in the past, but this is the first year for her.

“We have had some students talk to us all week long like ‘oh we can’t wait to do it’, some of our upperclassmen have done it in the past,” Cross said.

Members of Gear Up, Youth Service Center, Cumberland River Comp Care Center and Americorp were in attendance to offer information. The Youth Service Center also handles Project Graduation.

“Project Graduation is another thing that we do to keep kids from drinking and driving. We keep them on after graduation and we usually set up with our drunk goggles and they do this activity there,” said Krista Partin.

The program is just a preview of what the students will get to do at Project Graduation.

“The more they see it, the more they do it, the more they’ll retain it,” said Cross.

Project Graduation is currently fundraising for items needed for the event and they are selling flower baskets. Partin said they raise $25,000 for prizes, activities, and food for the graduating students. The money goes towards drug and alcohol awareness as well along with keeping the kids off the road after graduation.