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Home Misleading ‘Went To The Party’ Anti Drink-Driving Message

‘Went To The Party’ Anti Drink-Driving Message

by Brett M. Christensen

Outline

Message that features a graphic image of a car accident includes a transcript of the last words supposedly uttered by a young woman who died in the accident.

Brief Analysis

Although the central tenet in the message is certainly worth heeding, the message itself does not relate a true story. It does not describe a real accident. The photograph depicts a simulated car accident created as part of “Every 15 Minutes”, an educational program designed to emphasise the dangers of driving while impaired or texting. The same story has also circulated for several years as part of a bogus MADD email petition.

Example

Staged Car Accident

A TRUE STORY AND CONSIDER THIS IN THE UPCOMING NEW YEAR!

I went to the party and remembered what you said. You asked me not to drink alcohol. So I drank a Sprite. I felt proud of myself, as you said I should feel. You said I should not drink and drive, contrary to what some friends told me. I made a healthy choice and your advice was correct, as all you give me forever.

When the party finally ended, people began to drive without being able to do so. I went to my car with the certainty that he would return home in peace. I never imagined what awaited me, Mom. Now I’m lying in the street and I hear the policeman say: “The kid that caused this accident was drunk.” Mom, his voice seems so distant. My blood is spilled everywhere and I’m trying with all my might not moan. I can hear the doctors say, “This girl is going to die.” I have the certainty that the young man, who ran at full speed, decided to drink and drive, and now I have to die.

Why do people do this, Mom, knowing that this is going to ruin many lives? The pain is cutting me like a hundred knives. Tell my sister not to cry, tell Daddy to be strong. And when I go to heaven, I’ll be watching for you all. Someone should have taught that boy, its wrong to drink and drive. Maybe if his parents would have said, I would not be dying now. My breath is getting weaker, more and more. Mom, these are my last moments and I feel so desperate. I wish I could hug Mom, while I’m lying here dying. I wish I could tell you how much I love you, Mom. So .. I love … y. .. goodbye … ”

(These words were written by a reporter who witnessed the accident. The girl, as she died, I was saying these words and the reporter wrote down … very overwhelmed. The journalist started this campaign, if you read this note, please click ” share “, so more people can be aware. Therefore, I ask one small gesture, send it to your friends, family and loved ones)

 

Detailed Analysis

This message, which is currently circulating via Facebook and email, supposedly includes the poignant dying words of a young woman killed in a horrific car crash. According to the self-proclaimed “true” story, the dying girl uttered a final, heart-rending message directed to her mother that highlighted the dire consequences of drink-driving – a message that was transcribed by an attending journalist and later used as part of an awareness campaign. The story drives home its point with the inclusion of a graphic photograph of a car accident in which the body of a young woman lies through the broken windscreen of a blood-spattered car.

The take-home message in the above story is certainly worth heeding. Drink-driving is a killer and it is too often the young and innocent who suffer the consequences.

That said, the story itself is – not surprisingly – a work of fiction. In fact, the same message supposedly spoken by this dying girl has circulated in various other contexts for a number of years. Since at least 2004, the piece has circulated – formatted as a poem – as part of an anti drink-driving email petition falsely attributed to the organization, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD). It is unclear who originally penned the piece – versions have been circulating for at least a decade – but it is only this latest variant that makes the highly improbable claim that the words were actually spoken by a dying accident victim and captured verbatim by a journalist.

The disturbing photograph that accompanies the story is also not the real deal. The photograph depicts a simulated accident scene set up at California’s Laguna Hills High School in February 2010. The simulation was part of “Every 15 Minutes” young driver educational program. Information on the program’s About page explains:

Life’s lessons are best learned through experience. Unfortunately, when the target audience is teens and the topic is drinking and texting while driving, experience is not the teacher of choice.

The Every 15 Minutes Program offers real-life experience without the real-life risks. This emotionally charged program, entitled Every 15 Minutes, is an event designed to dramatically instil teenagers with the potentially dangerous consequences of drinking alcohol and texting while driving. This powerful program will challenge students to think about drinking, texting while driving, personal safety, and the responsibility of making mature decisions when lives are involved.

Thus, while the message might be useful as a means of illustrating the inherent dangers of drink driving, it is not a true story and it is not part of any official anti-drink-driving campaign.

Importance Notice

After considerable thought and with an ache in my heart, I have decided that the time has come to close down the Hoax-Slayer website.

These days, the site does not generate enough revenue to cover expenses, and I do not have the financial resources to sustain it going forward.

Moreover, I now work long hours in a full-time and physically taxing job, so maintaining and managing the website and publishing new material has become difficult for me.

And finally, after 18 years of writing about scams and hoaxes, I feel that it is time for me to take my fingers off the keyboard and focus on other projects and pastimes.

When I first started Hoax-Slayer, I never dreamed that I would still be working on the project all these years later or that it would become such an important part of my life. It's been a fantastic and engaging experience and one that I will always treasure.

I hope that my work over the years has helped to make the Internet a little safer and thwarted the activities of at least a few scammers and malicious pranksters.

A Big Thank You

I would also like to thank all of those wonderful people who have supported the project by sharing information from the site, contributing examples of scams and hoaxes, offering suggestions, donating funds, or helping behind the scenes.

I would especially like to thank David White for his tireless contribution to the Hoax-Slayer Facebook Page over many years. David's support has been invaluable, and I can not thank him enough.

Closing Date

Hoax-Slayer will still be around for a few weeks while I wind things down. The site will go offline on May 31, 2021. While I will not be publishing any new posts, you can still access existing material on the site until the date of closure.

Thank you, one and all!

Brett Christensen,
Hoax-Slayer