Simulator shows effects of texting and driving

(NBC) - Would you ever close your eyes when driving on the road? If you've ever sent a text message while driving you already have.

Steve Mochel runs The Fresh Green Light Driving School where he uses simulators to show teens and adults the dangers when you text and drive.

"What the simulators do," Mochel explained, "is it puts them in a situation that's dangerous but does it in a safe environment."

Jacob Kupin, 17, went through the simulator and the results were sobering. When Jacob started to text he took out a stop sign and other objects.

"As I'm going down to text, my foot will be resting on the gas pedal and I won't realize how fast I'm going," Kupin said. "Then I'll look up and I'll be going 20 to 30 miles over the speed limit."

Nearly 80 percent of all accidents result from driver distraction.

"Since the beginning of the Iraq War, there's been about 5,000 war-related deaths," Mochel said. "And on our roads during that same time there's been 40,000 kids killed through car accidents."

Copyright 2010 NBC. All rights reserved.