Two weeks ago, 12 students were hospitalized after suddenly falling ill at a Central Washington University party. The students were predominately female and some suspected that roofies were involved. After further investigation, police determined that nine of those hospitalized had been drinking Four Loko, and none had been drugged.
During a press conference today, officials said that students had blood alcohol levels that ranged from .123 to .335, with an average of .23, reports KOMO News. The legal limit to drive in the area is .08.
The potently alcoholic beverage that also contains caffeine has been the center of much debate on college campuses. The combination of 12 percent alcohol and caffeine poses a severe health risk, the effects of the caffeine masking the symptoms of intoxication. Four Loko and other alcoholic energy drinks have been banned from New Jersey’s Ramapo College, where the college president is inviting other colleges to follow suit.
The bans may be challenging to enforce, as underage drinking is already extremely common on most college capsules.