SADD clicks into Safe Driving Week


Credit: Jane Tardif

Students run into the car as fast as they can during the “Click-It” challenge. The “Click-It” challenge was part of SADD’s Safe Driving Week, which was held during the first week of May.

Jane Tardif and Elyssa Grillo

The Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) Club held their annual Safe Driving Week throughout the week of May 1. During the week, SADD club leaders organized a few events during lunches to get more people to learn about safe driving and participate in safe driving activities.

SADD is a nationwide club which originated at Wayland High School in 1981 after a devastating car accident that killed two Wayland hockey players. Now, the club has become a large part of the Wayland community and has been integrated into other schools across the country. The activities of Safe Driving Week at WHS included signing a poster to encourage safe driving, a “Click-It” challenge and a drunk goggles challenge.

“Safe Driving Week was created to promote and bring awareness to making smart decisions on the road,” junior SADD leader Lilly O’Driscoll said.

O’Driscoll was appointed as a new leader this past April. She and a few of her fellow club leaders monitored each activity and informed participants about the benefits of staying safe while behind the wheel.

To kick off Safe Driving Week, the SADD leaders and members made multiple posters around the school to encourage safe driving, featuring phrases such as “I pledge to keep the roads safe.” All students were encouraged to sign a poster as a promise to keep the roads safe by not driving while drunk.

The second activity of Safe Driving Week was the “Click-It” challenge, which was open to students during all three lunch blocks on Wednesday, May 3. During this challenge, teams raced into a car and attempted to buckle their seat belts as fast as they could. The team with the fastest time would win.

“I did the challenge to support and connect with fellow SADD members and to try and see if my group and I could get a good time,” sophomore Jillian Mele said.

The last activity of Safe Driving Week was a drunk goggles simulator, coordinated by Wayland Police Youth Officer Shane Bowles and the SADD leaders. The leaders purchased goggles for this activity that distorted a person’s vision as if they were intoxicated. Students were instructed to walk in a straight line with their arms at their sides while counting nine steps, then pivoting around and doing the same thing on the way back. This is the same test that a police officer conducts when they pull over a supected drunk driver.

“I expected the activity to be easy, but it turned out to be pretty hard,” senior Jake Zocco said.

Sophomore Schuyler Kilmon attempts the drunk goggles challenge. Kilmon, along with several others, failed the test. (Credit: Jane Tardif)

Zocco described his vision as going completely cloudy the second he put the goggles on. Once a participant finished the challenge, Bowles announced whether they would have theoretically passed or failed the test. Most of the students who participated in the test failed.

“Taking this test with drunk goggles on definitely will prevent me from making unsafe decisions in the future and gave me a good perspective of what being in that state of mind feels like,” freshman Sofia DiCarlo said.

For students like DiCarlo, the test was very effective in giving an important warning and understanding of how drinking can impair normal functions. All activities were free for Wayland High School students and the club did not earn any money for their time and effort in organizing the challenges.

“If we charge money, not all students would be able to participate,” junior leader Giovanni Sebastianelli said. “We would rather kids learn to be safe on the roads than make a profit.”