The display is a pickup truck that was in a collision with a stopped transport on Highway 401 in Quinte West in September 2013.
Carson Cross, training officer with the Belleville Fire Department, and Fire Prevention Officer Norm Mitts said officers were looking for a vehicle to use in training with extrication equipment and saw the pickup truck.
The fire department arranged with the wrecking yard to buy the vehicle and through the help of sponsors a trailer was purchased and the vehicle is now used it for educating the public about the dangers of distracted driving.
Cross said it’s very “eye catching” to the point where people want to hear the story.
When the vehicle was trailered into the Cobourg Firehall on Elgin Street East it was only a matter of minutes before a car stopped wanting to know the story on the vehicle.
“They were cruising along in the slow lane of Highway 401 and the water bottle went on the floor and they bent down to pick it up and in that time space they hit a parked tractor trailer on the shoulder of the road,” Cross said.
“It actually moved the rear axles of the loaded tractor trailer about five feet forward and the pickup stopped in a space of about 20 feet.”
When most people look at the picture they automatically assume the distraction to the driver was from using a cell phone.
When emergency services arrived on scene they thought the victim would be deceased, but to their amazement he had already climbed out of the pickup and only had two scratches.
A total of 12,000 “Stop Texting” magnets that have been distributed through the Belleville Fire Department have also been an enormous success.
Cross said people place the magnets on the trunk of their car and when someone behind reads the message it reminds them to stop texting.
The truck was placed in front of St. Mary’s Secondary School on Wednesday and in front of Cobourg Collegiate Institute on Thursday to hopefully drive home the message about all forms of distracted driving including texting.
It will also be on display this weekend at the Community Connections Expo in Cobourg.
Source: Northumberland Today