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South Jersey Students Hope To Put The Brakes On Distracted Driving

By Steve Tawa

CHERRY HILL, N.J. (CBS) -- Cherry Hill High School East students are competing with nearly 30 other schools for a driving simulator.  In an attempt to win the prize, two students put their classmates through some paces today with simulated distracted-driving games in the school's cafeteria.

For their project, 15-year-old sophomores Kristen Hearn and Sumun Iyer (below) had fellow students grab the wheel of a Nintendo video game ("Mario") and drive the course as they were confronted with various distraction scenarios.

distracted team tawa
(Kristen Hearn and Sumun Iyer. Credit: Steve Tawa)

Then Iyer had them texting and answering questions, to show that they really cannot multitask.

"We have what's called a Stroop test," she explains.  "You have to read the color of a font, versus what the word actually says.  It requires you to not only see things but make decisions at every single point."

Hearn knows that when she learns to drive, her full concentration will have to be on the road.

"But now everyone is pulled in different directions because of their electronics and their friends," she notes.  "Driving's really become a secondary activity."

A panel of judges will review final entries and two schools will each win a driving simulator thanks to the Brain Injury Alliance of New Jersey.  For more information, go to

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