Underage drinking has always been a priority for the Sheridan Police Department. During an appearance on Sheridan Meida’s Public Pulse, Chief Travis Koltiska and Captain Tom Ringley told listeners some of the hard truths about underage drinking.
According to Koltiska, the age of minors drinking alcohol is getting younger and those minors who do consume alcohol are doing so more regularly.
According to the Wyoming Department of Health Alcohol Prevention Plan (2018-2020), alcohol continues to be the most commonly reported substance used among all grade levels in the Cowboy State. The WDH reports that 19% of young people aged 12 to 20 years reported drinking alcohol and 11% reported binge drinking in the past 30 days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention define binge drinking as a pattern of drinking that brings a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC) to 0.08 g/dl or above. For a grown adult male, that amounts to approximately 5 to 6 drinks.
Underage drinking poses a range of health risks and negative consequences. The WDH reports early drinking has been associated with a range of social, emotional, behavioral, and health problems such as risky sexual behavior, car crash involvement, and unintentional injuries. Youth who begin drinking before the age of 15 are four times more likely to develop alcohol dependence.
SPD Chief Travis Koltiska
Ringley warned of the effects of alcohol on youth and about dangers that exist outside of the alcohol itself.
The SPD completes compliance checks as a measure to mitigate the ability of minors to gain access to alcohol from Sheridan retailers. Recently the SPD completed a series of these compliance checks within Sheridan. The SPD Captain had hoped for better results.
Another mitigating program utilized by the SPD is Training for Intervention ProcedureS or TIPS training. This program has operated for 35 years and teaches the most up to date training to alcohol sales personnel.
To schedule a TIPS training for you or your sales personnel, click here.