Columbia, SC (WLTX) -- Everyday an average of9 people are killed and more than1000 injured due to distracted driving according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Thursday, students at the University of South Carolina got a firsthand opportunity to see just how dangerous texting and driving can be.

"Texting and driving is very dangerous and a lot of people do not even realize it it until it is too late, so we are trying to get the word out so that college students and their families know the dangers in this," said Lieutenant Teena Gooding, Division of Law Enforcement at the University of South Carolina.

Lt. Gooding said she has seen lots of accidents over her 14-year career due to distracted driving.

"We do have a hard time with them admitting they were texting a lot of times, but sometimes you can tell," said Lt. Gooding.

However, U.S.C. Senior Cody Ritenour had no problems confessing what he does behind the wheel.

"I am constantly on my phone, checking my email, texting, Twitter, Facebook," said Ritenour.

It is those types of driving habits AT&T is hoping to change by bringing the texting and driving simulator to the campus of U.S.C.

"We are aware that at least 100,000 car accidents a year can be attributed to the driver texting while drving and some of those accidents are fatal," said Ted Creech, Director of External Affairs at At&T South Carolina.

Creech and AT&T hope that the simulator will change the minds of students and adults when it comes to texting while driving.

Creech said, "Our message is very simple and very powerful, 'It Can Wait,' any text you receive or send can wait until you are not driving a vehicle."

For more information or to try the simulator out at home visit

Read or Share this story: