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Vehicle simulator demonstrates alcohol, drug effects

The Safe Communities Coalition of the Red River Valley held a news conference Aug. 16 at West Fargo's Veterans Memorial Arena with the focus on North Dakota and Minnesota law enforcement efforts to crack down on impaired driving during the Labor Day holiday.

Those attending had both the opportunity to observe an impaired driving simulator in action and to drive the simulator. This battery-powered vehicle simulates how alcohol and other drugs affect a motorist's driving skills, including steering, braking and acceleration.

Literature distributed also reinforced the perils of impaired driving, noting that it is one of America's most-often-committed and deadliest crimes, and suggested the following tips for a safe Labor Day weekend: Whenever you plan on consuming alcohol, designate a sober driver before going out and give that person your keys; if you're impaired, call a taxi, use mass transit or call a sober friend or family member to get you home safely; promptly report drunk drivers on the roadways to law enforcement; wearing your safety belt while in a car or using protective gear and a helmet while on a motorcycle is your best defense against an impaired driver; and remember that a friends don't let friends drive drunk. If you know someone who is about to drive or ride while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get where they are going safely.

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