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Local Students Learn Dangers Of Texting And Driving

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Nearly 400 students packed the auditorium at South Side High School in Hookstown, Beaver County.

They were there for an assembly, an important one, on the dangers of texting while behind the wheel.

"I just want people to realize that it's extremely dangerous and it's not worth your life or anybody else's life on that fact," said student Kaitlyn Work. "Life is too precious for it."

The program was put into place because of 17 –year-old Work. She entered AT&T's "Why I Pledge" contest and she won.

Work had to write an essay about why she won't text and drive. The contest is part of AT&T's, "It Can Wait" campaign.

"We are a high tech data information company," said Jim Penna with AT&T. "But we also know that there are lives at stake, or own employees, their relatives, their family, our customers, there is no one text that is worth anyone's life."

Former Steeler, Charlie Batch, was there. He was actually part of Work's prize for winning the contest.

"For her to step out and really want to be part of the campaign and really submit her essay and for us to finally go through and for her to win," Batch said. "She was excited, but I was more excited to meet her, because this is what her passion is. She wants to get out here and really encourage her student body."

After the assembly, students had a chance to try out a driving simulator. It gives you the feel of texting behind the wheel. KDKA's Sarah Arbogast tested it out and found it tough to keep control of the wheel. But more than that, the experience was experience for her and the young drivers.

"Anybody that sits down to the simulator realized how hard it is to multitask and do two complex tasks at the same time and that's why texting and driving is so dangerous," said Griffin Hagler with the "It Can Wait" campaign.

AT&T is hoping its "It Can Wait" campaign encourages people of all ages to make a pledge to put the phone away, while out on the road.

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