Students at Oildifelds High School in Diamond Valley will be getting a look at the impacts of driving under the influence this week.

Operation Prevention is returning for a second year tomorrow (May 14).

The event gives grade 12 students a simulated look at an impaired driving collision, taking them through each step of the process.

Academic and Career Advisor Allison Fitzpatrick explains how it’s formatted.

“It starts with hearing the 9-1-1 call, seeing the first responders arrive, watching a vehicle extraction, seeing somebody go through the medical system, and also then seeing what would happen on the other side with the driver going through the court system. After that, we have a panel talk with an assortment of first responders as well as a speaker from Mothers Against Drunk Driving.”

operation preventionPhoto credit: Kylee Sullivan (@smilee_photos)

The event will see participation from Diamond Valley peace officers, firefighters, support services, RCMP, AHS paramedics, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, 9-1-1 operator, and STARS air ambulance.

It also includes former students as actors portraying those involved in the collision.

Fitzpatrick says everyone was extremely enthusiastic when the idea first came about.

“Officer Hogan, who is one of the local peace officers, approached me, and we were talking about the possibility of having P.A.R.T.Y. Program (Prevent Alcohol & Risk-Related Trauma in Youth), but unfortunately, they are not currently operating. So, we decided to see if we could create our own version. We reached out to various town agencies, and everyone was really eager to help. So, we kind of created our own version of the P.A.R.T.Y. Program that we called Operation Prevention.”

Operation Prevention was launched last year and was received very well by students.

“We were quite nervous about how it would be received by students. The response was phenomenal. We sent out a survey afterwards and 100 per cent of the students recommended that we continue it,” says Fitzpatrick. “It was very interesting to see every single component of the day, someone pointed out that that was the part they felt was most impactful. This year, we had students from last year who had already volunteered to be our actors this year. Another thing that was telling for me was how quickly the permission forms came back, that shows me that the word is out there that this is something that is worthy of participating in."