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Stayin’ Alive On Spring Break

Posted by Jane Akre
Friday, March 27, 2009 11:37 AM EST
Category: On The Road, Major Medical, Protecting Your Family
Tags: Vacation Safety, Spring Break, Teenagers

Bpring break number one rule for girls- stay together.

NATIONAL VOICES

Erin Weed promotes safety on spring break.

Erin Weed

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IMAGE SOURCE: Stayin alive Web site/ Spring break girls

 

SafeSpringBreak.org is striving to be the #1 safety resource for students going on spring break.

The nonprofit organization shares the story of Mallory and her friends from Wisconsin. 

They travel to Daytona Beach, Florida to take advantage of their time off, the sun and, of course, alcohol.  The American Medical Association reports that 74 percent of women surveyed say they use alcohol as an excuse for outrageous behavior.

CNN’s cameras are along.

Mallory and her friends go to a club, but she leaves the club at 11:30 pm with two young men she doesn’t know.  Natalie Holloway was never seen when she left a bar with young men in Aruba in May 2005. Her case remains unsolved.

Sgt. Albert Tolley says because of excessive drinking, “Each year they are unable to describe the series of events that led to their sexual assault.  It’s heartbreaking and they go home with it to their families we're left with little information to go on.”

28-year-old Erin Weed founded Safe Spring Break and the program, Girls Fight Back, which promotes girls learn self defense, after her best friend and sorority sister, Shannon McNamera was murdered on an Illinois college campus.  

Eventually the three girls hear from Mallory, who says she was just looking for a ride home.  But at 1 am she leaves again to continue partying.

Erin Weed looks at the videotape with CNN and has a few rules to follow- the number one rule for girls is :

  • Go out with your girlfriends - Go home with your girlfriends.

The decision by Mallory is a cause for concern, says Weed. 

“There’s no doubt you’re taking a risk, I don’t condone it because sticking with your friends is one of the most important things.”

  • Check with friends
  • Monitor your drinking
  • Trust your instincts
  • Know if you plan to have sex

The same night CNN was in Daytona Beach, an 18-year-old girl beaten up by a 19-year-old boy, both were on spring break, because she wouldn’t take his phone number.   

Erin Weed is on a 25 college campus tour this spring with her college program, “Stayin’ Alive on Spring Break.” Since 2002, Weed  has spoken to over 100,000 college students nationwide about taking responsibility for personal safety.

Other Safety Tips on Spring Break

  • On the road, buckle up and take turns behind the wheel.  Keep the driver awake. Make sure everyone has a valid driver’s license and the vehicle registration is in the car.
  • In a hotel - book a room above the first floor but below the sixth floor says Weed.  First floor rooms are easy to break into.  Any floor above the sixth might be too high for a fire ladder to reach. Keep sliding doors locked and use a safe for any valuables.  Know where the nearest fire exits are.
  • At an ATM go in groups and during the daylight hours.  When you approach the machine, do a 360 degree turn. Cover the keypad with your hand. If you see someone nearby just leave and go to another ATM.
  • Drunks are easy targets for crime. Know the drinking and driving laws in the state you are visiting. A University of Wisconsin study found that 75 percent of college males and 43 percent of females reported being intoxicated every day on spring break. 
  • Get an estimate of your blood alcohol level by visiting B4UDrink.Mobi and estimate BAC (Blood Alcohol Concentration) levels anywhere and everywhere you take your mobile phone.#

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