From the annual scientific conference of the Research Society on Alcoholism in San Diego:
It’s no secret that alcohol consumption during parking lot tailgaters prior to college football games is commonplace, but the fans most likely to binge drink aren’t college students.
A study conducted by researchers from the department of psychiatry at the University of Florida College of Medicine, Gainesville, found that the rates of binge drinking while tailgating were higher for non-students than for students, higher for males, and for those over the age of 21.
The researchers approached 258 on-campus tailgaters aged 18-71 years old prior to two University of Florida Gators home football games (the opposing teams weren’t disclosed) 2.5 hours before kickoff until 10 minutes after kickoff. Willing participants were asked a series of questions and supplied a breath sample.
Of the 258 study participants, 122 (48%) reported binge drinking, which was defined as defined consuming 5 or more standard drinks (4 for women) over the course of a couple of hours. Male fans more likely to binge drink compared with female fans (60% vs. 32%, respectively), as were fans aged 21 and older (50% vs. 20% for those of younger age). More than half of the binge drinking fans (64%) were non-students who were currently employed.
The researchers concluded that “more effort is needed to promote safety and decrease binge drinking at these activities. Additional public health programs should be implemented both on- and off-campus to address this problem.”