‘Drunk packing' could have dangerous consequences

Amity Addrisi reports

On some college campuses, there’s a practice called “drunk packing” and students say they do this to help a friend who may have drank too much. But doctors are putting out a warning saying this is not a safe option.

Drunk packing as it's commonly referred to is when you put a backpack on a drunk friend before they go to sleep to keep them from rolling on their back, throwing up, and drowning in their own vomit.

Of course, students have an opinion about this controversial method.

"It's very innovative. It's different and I think if it comes down to that you don't want to get in trouble then do what you have to do," said student Olivia Cole.

Most students mentioned the word “trouble” saying they wanted to avoid it and will do anything to keep from getting in it.

"No one wants to get in trouble. No one likes that feeling of being guilty or having something bad happen to a friend and so yeah I think there's definitely that fear of getting in trouble," said Cole.

Others on campus say they have no problem calling 911 if someone needed help especially with the amnesty policy where students who call for help avoid legal trouble.

"Sometimes you get in situations and stuff gets a little too real too quickly, and you need to reach out for help, and it's good that people actually do take the amnesty policy seriously," said student Collin Hilt.

Dr. Ralph Riviello with clinical operations at Drexel University Emergency Medicine says drunk packing has become a real concern, because people can throw up and choke no matter what position they're in.

"Putting a backpack on somebody and hoping for the best is the wrong answer; it's dangerous. If the person is that bad and you're thinking about doing this to them they probably need medical attention, because aspiration can occur whether you're on your back on your side on your face," says Riviello.

In Washington state, the Amnesty Law provides for protection from prosecution for someone who seeks swift medical help for themselves or others without fear of penalty from issues such as underage drinking or drug use. 

© 2017 KING-TV


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