Totaled truck shows reality of texting and driving - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Totaled truck shows reality of texting and driving

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WSIL -- More than 1,500 students will visit the Pavilion in Marion this week for Traffic Safety Days. While there, they'll see a powerful display showing the reality of texting while driving-- a totaled truck in which a 16 year old died because she was texting and driving. 

"She was an amazingly bright child," said her father, Jim Hood.  

Lacy Hood lost her life in 2015, just a month after she got her license. She was killed when she looked down at her phone to send a text. 

"I got to the hospital and they let me in the morgue and I got to say goodbye to her," said Jim Hood, Lacy's father. 

Nearly four years later, her father Jim is trying to shed light on the reality of distracted driving. He bought Lacy's truck back from the insurance company to use it as a message to new drivers. 

"The hardest part was, I had to put it back together, because they cut the whole cab and stuff off of it to get her out of it," said Hood. 

Trooper Greg Miller hopes this powerful example will teach drivers just how quickly lives can be changed. 

"You've never seen pain in somebody's eyes until you have to tell that next of kin that their loved one will not be coming home," said Illinois State Trooper Greg Miller. 

Jim hopes his daughter's story will save families from the grief he now lives with, "Just because you've got your seat belt on doesn't mean you're going to walk away from a crash and I don't think kids understand that." 

He's glad to have Lacy's truck out of his shop so he doesn't have to look at it anymore. 

"I feel like there is a weight lifted off my shoulders and that this needed to be done. Its going to do some good things out of a horrific situation," said Hood. 

He asks that next time you hear your phone go off while you're driving, think of Lacy and wait to respond. 

Trooper Miller said it's hard to determine exactly how many crashes are caused by texting and driving, but it's estimated that 70 percent of crashes are caused from some form of distracted driving.

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