The crash car sitting in front of is not just any crash car: it's the vehicle in which Andrea Giattino, a 2010 graduate, was killed by a drunk driver last July.
Giattino's boyfriend, Justin Quaranta, calls the car "a black mark," something that is always difficult to look at. But right now, he said, he knows it has a purpose: helping people understand the dangers of drinking and driving.
"We felt it would have a stronger impact than putting a random car that isn't tied to anybody. It would hit home and maybe make a little bit more of a difference," said Quaranta, who was driving the car the night of the crash.
Since that accident – in which the other driver, who was intoxicated, also died – , a nonprofit dedicated to curtailing tragedies stemming from driving while intoxicated.
Quaranta has been running tables at various Long Island events to promote the foundation's breathalyzer campaign, in which it hopes to make people aware of their own limitations and how those limitations are often overestimated. He said the foundation is also working on a research partnership with Brookhaven National Laboratory.
The foundation also recently donated $5,000 to the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence to support its intervention program. The foundation also established a scholarship at Ward Melville High School and plans to do the same at Suffolk Community College.
The crash car arrived the last week in May and will stay through the summer, Quaranta said, coinciding with the time period where more people die in DWI crashes than any other time period in the year.
"We want to use this to shift the paradigm," he said. "We want to get people talking about drinking and driving when it actually matters."
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