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Zombie campaign aims to stop drunk driving

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Freshman Alyssa Lateef takes a turn at the drunk driving simulator. Photo from Nick Jurney.
A new program has hit the CSU-Pueblo campus as part of National Collegiate Alcohol Awareness Week with hopes to show the dangers of drunk driving.

The Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Program at CSU-Pueblo teamed up with National Highway Safety, campus safety and the Persistent Drunk Driver Committee of Colorado to bring the “Even Zombies Know” campaign to campus.

“The Even Zombies Know campaign is a social norming campaign that closes the gap between perception and reality in students,” said Steve Jordan, the director of the Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention Program on campus.

According to the campaign brochure, the goal is to educate students through a variety of messages and events which illustrate the gaps between perception and reality.

The operation brought in the “Alive at 25 Driving Simulator” outside of Belmont Residence Hall for students to see some of the dangers of driving drunk.

Students wore drunk goggles which changed their perception of the simulated road. The simulator tested their ability to maneuver obstacles while impaired.

The goggles appeared to make reactions much slower and more difficult to handle certain situations, such as making turns or avoiding oncoming traffic.

The driving simulator was just one of many events that the campaign has planned to increase awareness about the dangers of drunk driving.

“We are going to have several events throughout the school year promoting healthy decisions about alcohol and drug use,” Jordan said.

Another event sponsored by the campaign included a human vs. zombies capture the flag game.

The idea behind the zombie theme was to choose a topic that students would “notice, listen to and want to know more about,” according to the campaign website.

“Making responsible decisions means using your brain and who knows more about brains than zombies,” the site said.

The campaign is funded from a three-year grant, according to Jordan.

“The money comes from a grant provided to us by the Colorado Department of Human Services, Division of Behavioral Health and the Persistent Drunk Driver Committee of Colorado,” Jordan said.

He also added that the grant money comes from drivers charged with driving under the influence and driving
while ability impaired citations.

The campaign promotes awareness not only from events, but also by listing several facts and figures on its website. One such chart provides figures which equate to the costs of a first-offense DUI, which they estimate totals around $10,000.

In addition to that chart, in which they break down the cost into individual categories including fees and court costs, another chart is presented that shows what that money could better be spent on, rather than risking a DUI.

The second chart, a hypothetical one listing alternatives, includes things like the cost of a spring break trip, tickets to Bronco games, 16 tanks of gas and more.

For more information on the campaign, visit www.evenzombiesknow.com, or www.facebook.com/EvenZombiesKnow.