SIKESTON, MO (KFVS) - Many student-athletes like to prove their skills on the field but dozens from Sikeston High School are also setting an example off the field.
Students from every fall sport and a few clubs at Sikeston have taken the “Buckle Up, Phone Down” pledge when they’re behind the wheel.
With facts supplied from the Missouri Department of Transportation, the group of students created a PSA video about why the pledge will keep them, their friends and roads safer.
The students mention that 1 in every 4 car accidents in the U.S. involves texting and driving, and that it’s the leading cause of death for teens.
Senior Jeffrey Thornbrough, who plays soccer and baseball for Sikeston, says making the video was fun but he also feels empowered to be that voice of reason for friends who take the risk and drive distracted.
"You could die from it,” he said. “It's a serious cause and I take it to heart because that is just not cool. If you can prevent someone, might as well take a step up and just do it."
Senior Zariah Blissett-Hall, who plays volleyball and basketball for Sikeston, thinks the it’s a great cause.
She admits she hasn't always been the most alert driver and wants to improve herself.
'I get on my phone and 'oh I need to hurry up and snapchat them back. This is important', but it's not important," she said. "And after hearing those facts it made me think like I could be that one, so it can wait. It definitely can wait."
Ashley Gilman is a cheerleader at Sikeston and says buckling up is just as important as putting your phone out of reach.
"I've heard that most car accidents that happen are just a mile away from their home or wherever they are suppose to be going," Gilman said. "So taking that extra step to just buckle up before you go places is really going to make an impact."
Sikeston High School has challenged eight other schools in Southeast Missouri to take the Buckle Up Phone Down pledge and make their own video.
Football player David Rowland thinks the pledge could become a viral trend.
"For all we know in two months or so the whole, I mean schools around the usa could be doing it. Could be going worldwide or something like that. I think that would be awesome."
Those high schools include Cape Central, Charleston, Farmington, Jackson, Kennett, New Madrid, Notre Dame, and Poplar Bluff.
For tips on how to get started or to participate as a business visit MODOT’s ‘Buckle Up, Phone Down’ website, visit here.