Paraplegic begs students not to drink and drive

Amber Nicholson
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Kensington students received a raw recount of what it's like to survive a drinking and driving accident by survivor Alex Poole Monday afternoon.
"This is a hell of a way to live," Poole told Kensington Intermediate Senior High's graduating students.
"I wouldn't wish it upon an enemy. I wouldn't wish it upon a dog."
Poole is a paraplegic as a result of getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol for more than 12 hours.

Drinking and driving survivor Alex Poole spoke to graduating KISH students Monday afternoon about the effect his actions had on his life. As a result of the accident, Poole lives as paraplegic that makes an easy action such as getting into his car a lengt

Kensington students received a raw recount of what it's like to survive a drinking and driving accident by survivor Alex Poole Monday afternoon.
"This is a hell of a way to live," Poole told Kensington Intermediate Senior High's graduating students.
"I wouldn't wish it upon an enemy. I wouldn't wish it upon a dog."
Poole is a paraplegic as a result of getting behind the wheel after drinking alcohol for more than 12 hours.
He was 20-years-old at the time of his accident. He had been drinking all day, flew into a rage and jumped into his car to drive a few kilometres home.
"How long do you think it took me to get home?" Poole asked KISH students.
Some guessed two minutes and others guessed four.
"It took seven months," he said.
Poole, who was not wearing a seatbelt at the time of his accident, was thrown from his vehicle and landed on his back on a pile of rocks snapping his spine into two pieces.
"I was 1.6 kilometres away from home."
Police told him if he had been wearing his seatbelt, he would have walked away from the accident.
"All the odds are stacked against you if you don't wear a belt," he said.
He described to students the severe pain he was in when arriving at the hospital, but that nurses weren't able to give him anything for the pain because he was too impaired.
"Waking up at 20 in intensive care, smashed to pieces ... this was not in the equation."
Poole shocked students with a detailed description of his bodily functions and sex life. He left nothing to the imagination hoping his frankness would impact students' decision making.
Poole, who has spent 34 years in a wheelchair, works as an educational speaker on behalf of the Department of Transportation and Public Works. For the past seven years he has spoken to groups including graduating classes, driver education classes and driver improvement programs.
Poole is currently working towards the purchase of a wheelchair van that will allow him to operate his vehicle without having to get out of his chair. The cost for the van is about $60,000.
"I will literally beg you not to get behind the wheel when impaired or with a driver that is impaired," Poole pleaded with KISH students. "Why not get home with all your parts working?"

Organizations: Department of Transportation and Public Works

Geographic location: Kensington

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  • Dalton
    June 21, 2010 - 19:08

    Thankyou Alex. Seeing is believing. When we were young we felt we were immortal. I hope that the Kensington students learned from your mistakes. I also hope that those of us who are a little bit older learn as well. Keep up the good work.

  • Dalton
    June 21, 2010 - 19:05

    Thankyou Alex. Seeing is believing. When we were young we felt we were immortal. I hope that the Kensington students learned from your mistakes. I also hope that those of us who are a little bit older learn as well. Keep up the good work.

  • Violet
    June 21, 2010 - 19:04

    Hopefully Alex with your story that at least one person will be saved from having to deal with what you deal with on a daily basis. Keep up the great work