Decked out with spandex pants, a cape and mask, a superhero has been spotted roaming the grounds of Plymouth-Canton Educational Park, aiming to save lives and promote safety.
Captain Caution, the safe-driving superhero alter-ego of Plymouth senior Jamarl Eiland, is leading Students Against Destructive Decisions' (S.A.D.D.) campaign to enforce safe driving habits amongst student drivers.
"I'm here to inform students on the danger of destructive driving and I'm here to help them make better decisions on the road," Eiland said.
The superhero has appeared in a series of videos produced by S.A.D.D. that address topics from substance abuse to winter driving, according to S.A.D.D. adviser Janet Sutherland.
Captain Caution's latest heroic feat was handing out stickers with his logo Wednesday for students to place in their car as a constant reminder to practice safe driving habits.
Sometimes, though, a visit from the caped superhero might come by surprise.
"He has accosted cars that are driving through the neighborhood with his stop sign and asked (the drivers) to stop and then climbed in and given them tips on how to drive," Sutherland said.
The superhero project is Plymouth-Canton S.A.D.D.'s contribution to Strive for a Safer Drive, an effort sponsored by the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning, Ford Motor Company and AAA, in which S.A.D.D. clubs submit proposals for a media campaign centered around teens and safe driving, Sutherland said.
The competition is open to high schools in counties that rank highest for teen traffic fatalities and serious injuries.
Plymouth-Canton S.A.D.D.'s proposal was among those accepted, and the school received $2,000 to conduct a campaign between December 2012 and early March 2013, Sutherland said.
The group's campaign includes the safe-driving videos starring the superhero, as well as vinyl signs for the Plymouth, Canton and Salem high school buildings to emphasize the messages about distracted driving, winter driving and road responsibility from the videos, Sutherland said.
In 2012, Plymouth-Canton was the state winner, and 40 students were sent to the Ford proving grounds in Romeo to work with professional driving instructors and test-drive new Ford vehicles, including a Mustang and an Escape. The S.A.D.D. group is looking to retain its state crown this year in the competition, where the prize includes a visit to the proving grounds in Dearborn.