UT students show real-life dangers of drunk driving

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TOLEDO (WTVG) -- The casket is real. So are the consequences.

But the funeral is merely an act.

It's all meant to bring home the reality of what could happen when someone who is drunk gets behind the wheel.

The 3rd annual "Mocktails," organized by Pi Beta Phi sorority, is underway at The University of Toledo.

From Noon-3:00PM, anyone walking through Centennial Mall will see a display of a current student who appears as though she died today, Nov. 8, 2017.

That display, featuring full-color photographs mounted on the top of a casket, is meant to shock students and encourage them to attend a mock trial. It's set for 6:00PM-8:00PM inside the student union.

Organizers will host a fake party, then turn out the lights in a "black out," which they said portrays the "black out culture" of binge drinking that is pervasive on college campuses across the country, including here.

"I think here at The University of Toledo that is what our culture is," said Cassidy Nugent, a senior at UT and member of Pi Beta Phi who organized this year's Mocktails.

A real judge will then preside over a trial and conviction, showcasing the consequences of a drunk driving crash. After that, a father whose son was paralyzed in a crash will speak to the audience.

The event is also in honor of a Pi Beta Phi member who was hit and killed by a drunk driver near UT in 1996.

"It is a very somber night," adds Nugent, "and a lot of our members definitely reflect on the events that happened and are more aware of it now."

Anyone interested in the event is welcome to attend. It is open to both student and non-student members of the community.