Four Loko – “Blackout in a can”

"Blackout in a can"The alcoholic energy drink Four Loko has achieved “Cult” status among underage drinkers, especially high school students.

Nine students at Central Washington University were hospitalized on October 8  after consuming four Loko.  Some of them had blood alcohol levels above .300 – considered lethal. In September, 23 students at Ramapo College in northern New Jersey were laid to waste drinking Four Loko.

Four Loko is a sweet, 12 percent alcohol, highly-caffeinated and carbonated beverage in a soda pop-styled 23.5 oz can. It’s the nuclear bomb of alcoholic energy drinks (AEDs).

The result: A wide-awake drunk. Until acute alcohol poisoning finally causes passing out. Or worse. If a 120 pound person were to consume two in just one hour, they would have a potentially fatal blood alcohol level.

There are several Facebook pages dedicated to Four Loko and its side effects. Check out some of the comments from Facebook pages “The last thing I remember was opening the 4 loko” and “Save Four Loko“:

“The first time i drank 4loko. I gave a girl two tattos…i never tatted before that night.”

“It’s the only drink that everyone in my town likes i gess (sic) well just have to do drugs now since its cocaine anyways.”

“I got tackled by the cops during a 4 hr blackout, and lost my brand new droid all in the same night.”

“Drank 2 of them in record time and was on ambien… I could’ve sworn we were getting chased by zombies, and i missed my college exam the next morning.”

“Drank two in about 45 minutes not thinking much, I get in my car… and as I’m driving it hits super hard. I guess I was swerving all over the road, and I made it to this party. Walk in… sit down…pass out.”

“Didnt believe my friends when they said they were blackouts in a can….beer bonged two and I was a sloppy mess.”

Combining caffeine with alcohol is dangerous because caffeine masks the intoxicating effects of alcohol, allowing the user to feel like they are not getting drunk as quickly, enabling them to drink more with potentially lethal results. A person drinking an AED is more likely to drive while intoxicated.

Openly discuss this with those in your circle. Educate them on the risks they could be taking with their lives and those of their friends.

This is not “cool”. This is not a simple” rite of passage”.

It’s flirting with death.

-Tom

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