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Ocean Township's Rude Awakening Program Aims Save Young Lives

OCEAN TOWNSHIP: Ocean's Patrolman, Special Officer James Roese is coordinating a program called "Rude Awakening" to save lives -young lives - Ocean Township's high school students.

The program will be presented in the Spring of 2015 in Ocean Township High School, Hillel Yeshiva High School and surrounding high schools.

Police Chief Steven Peters introduced the program at the first scheduled community meeting at town hall. Ocean PD Officer Roese described the program details to the public. The work is under the Traffic Safety Bureau with Lt. Timothy Torchia and PO Alisa Rodriquez. Additional information meetings will be on Feb. 11, March 18 and April 8 at the Township Court Room. All start at 7:00 p.m.

Rude Awakening is a drug and alcohol program designed to educate high school Seniors and Juniors about the devastating consequences of drinking / drugging while driving motor vehicles. It has been labeled "Best of the Best", one of the nation's best programs in combatting drunk driving. It has been presented usually at high school prom time. It will be given to 1500 students in Ocean this year.

The program includes speakers explaining law enforcement efforts to deal with DWI drivers, trauma room nurses and EMT's describing their experiences in DWI accident ordeals of students, family members who have endured the pain of loved ones - injured, and disabled and lost sons and daughters. A court judge will describe legal consequences incurred in law suits and losses of driving privileges.

Students will be hands-on involved in the program. They will experience what it is like to drive under the influence. They will drive golf carts through an obstacle course wearing "foggles" (special goggles made to emulate vision effects of alcohol and drugs on drivers). The foggles will also test a student's skills in familiar, day to day simple activities that become distorted by use of alcohol and drugs.

Students will witness airbag deployment in simulated accidents; the impact on passengers, including infants; and the result of a crash as they watch cars being dropped from a crane high above the ground that reach speeds of vehicles involved in accidents.

It is reality. Moms talk about children they lost. Emergency Technicians describe the horrors of an accidents scene of injured drivers and passengers. Students may tell about lost friends and schoolmates gone forever, or worse.

Community Sponsors, Volunteers and Contributors:

The community has a most important role as volunteers needed to help with operations, leading activities with students, managing the golf cart operations, and to guide certain student task performances, and other jobs needed at the time of the events.

Donations by residents are welcome. Contributions can be by check made out to Ocean Township Police Department and earmarked for Rude Awakening. The program costs about $22,000 for materials (foggles and crane rentals, for example) this year. Businesses will be asked to help as well.

Volunteer sign-up sheets are available. Volunteer dates are Friday, April 24 at Palaia Park and Friday May 15 at the Ocean Township High School.

Persons interested in participating can call Officer Roese at 732-610-6686.


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