High School Anti-Alcohol Program Planned for April

School district and EMS officials will roll out a much-anticipated anti-alcohol program at Lowry High School this April.

"Every 15 Minutes" is a two-day program which demonstrates to high school students the impact drinking and driving have on themselves, their families, friends and the community.

The program is highlighted by a simulated traffic collision near the high school involving an impaired teenage driver and a fatally injured victim.

The program was set to kick off in April 2012 with a series of events and activities aimed at replicating the emotional impact of drinking and driving. A mock accident and its entire aftermath were scheduled to be filmed and shown to students during an assembly the following day.

However, the death of a Lowry High School student the weekend before the program was to begin brought the programming to a halt. Officials said they would wait for a more appropriate time to make the presentation.

"This is an extremely emotional and impactful program," said Humboldt General Hospital EMS Rescue Director Pat Songer. "We had to pull back so we could allow Lowry High School and our community to grieve the loss of this accident victim."

Songer continued, "When we do present the program, though, it will bring great benefit to the students at Lowry High School."

The program has been rescheduled for Monday and Tuesday, April 22-23.

School officials say they are 100 percent supportive of the "Every 15 Minutes" program.

Debbie Watts, principal of Lowry High School in Winnemucca, said, "We love our students, we want them to make good decisions, we want them to be safe. If this program can help further that mission for us, we are 100 percent on board."

Funding for the program has come through many community donations. Songer said all existing donations will go toward the program once it is presented in Winnemucca this spring.

He added, "We look forward to the opportunity to educate our youth on the dangers of drinking and driving. We want to keep them safe and sober."

For more information on "Every 15 Minutes," please call HGH EMS Rescue at (775) 623-5222, ext. 263.