The Analysis: Jeff Takes the Sheriff’s Distracted Driving Simulator for a Spin

Earlier this week I went to the sheriff’s office to test drive their computerized Texting and Drunk Driving simulator. Chief Bill Barbera guided me through various scenarios that involved country roads and city streets, both in good weather and dark, foggy, rainy conditions. While I was texting and driving the simulator, I managed to send garbled text messages, and run over two innocent pedestrians and one child who had chased a soccer ball into the street who I never saw coming. Sheriff Lou Falco said he didn’t watch me take the test because he didn’t want to disturb my concentration, and his examination of my test results proved I was superior…but not in a good way…

Audio: Lou Falco

Falco says the plan is to invite area companies’ employees to take the simulator for a spin, and secure a program that would test police officers in high-speed chase situations. But most importantly, he wants teens to appreciate the perils of distracted driving, though they sometimes think they can get away with it…

Audio: Lou Falco

The system was developed by Simulated Systems International and each unit costs about $26,000. Falco got the first one using a combination of forfeiture money, grants and private donations. He’s hoping to purchase four additional units.

Snow Closings Updated Regularly

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