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Boston University Steps Up Underage Drinking Patrols

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BOSTON (CBS) – Boston University is taking action after several students got so drunk, they needed to be hospitalized. The school already has a very aggressive alcohol-enforcement program in place, and for three years, it’s been working. But a recent spike in alcohol-fueled trips to the ER has the school worried.

Weekend emergencies on Commonwealth Ave are commonplace.

“Pretty much every weekend you see ambulances going from some of the younger kids’ dorms,” BU senior Scott Shaw says. “And I’m glad they’re stepping up.”

But the problem goes beyond freshmen. Last weekend alone, of the 11 students rushed to the hospital for alcohol-related problems, six were over 21 – legal to drink.

“I don’t necessarily think it’s a bigger problem here than elsewhere,” senior Amanda Munoz told WBZ-TV.

BU police disagree. Effective immediately, they’re stepping up patrols, including more plainclothes cops all over campus and at off-campus spots known for big parties.

“I think it’s good,” says Lars Nordgreen, “it makes us feel safe that they’re there watching over us because incidents do happen when young people drink a lot of alcohol.”

But some undergrads chafe at the crackdown. “Everyone’s just a little bit tired of it kind of creates a little bit of resentment towards the police force, which they don’t really want,” junior Alex Fox says. “So I think it does create some kind of animosity.”

And worse, others say, it might encourage bad decisions. Munoz says, “If you know the police are going to come if you like call the ambulance or something, that could prevent you from wanting to go to the hospital which could very much endanger your friend.”

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