Spring Break Disasters: Excessive Risk-Taking by College Students - 7 Survival Tips

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Nationally-renowned safety, behavioral and travel expert Steve Crimando offers Spring Break Safety Tips to College Students

Spring break time is here for countless college students across the country. Dreams of fun in the sun can provide much needed motivation to push through the grind of mid-terms. A few critical yet common-sense precautions can help prevent spring break dreams from becoming nightmares.

According to Steven Crimando, Managing Director of Extreme Behavioral Risk Management in New York, managing behavior is the main risk for students.

Excessive risk taking is pervasive among both genders. According to a University of Wisconsin study, 75% of college males and 44% of females reported being intoxicated on a daily basis during spring break. Nearly 50 percent of the males and more than 40 percent of the females also said they were drunk to the point of vomiting or passing out at least once during break.

Crimando says, "This is the kind of binge drinking that is the major cause of alcohol poisoning. Everyone who goes on spring break plans to have plenty of fun but no one is planning on getting sick, hurt, or in real life-changing trouble."

He adds that much of the risk associated with spring break is created by reckless behavior and that risk is compounded when students may be far from home, on someone else's turf and extremely vulnerable.
Crimando offers 7 tips for spring break survival:

1.    Stay together: Crime prevention research concludes the probability of being victimized drops substantially if you are with at least one other person. Staying together in a group of three or more decreases the likelihood of trouble even further. Never leave a bar, club or party with a stranger. Arrange a buddy system and watch out for your friends.

2.    Don't go looking for trouble: Stay out of areas known for drugs, violence or prostitution. Stay close to the hubs of spring break activity and resist exploring areas far from your hotel or friends. Become familiar with your street names, and landmarks which can be important if you get lost or separated from your group.

3.    File a Flight Plan: Always let friends or relatives at home know your whereabouts. Leave your general itinerary with someone who is not traveling with you.

4.    Watch that Drink: Don't accept a drink from anyone if you did not see it being prepared yourself. Also, don't leave your drink unattended for any period of time. If you have to, dump it and get a fresh one.

5.    Have a Plan B: When entering a hotel, bar or club, always know where emergency exits are located in case of a fire or other urgent situation. In an emergency; don't just run from danger, run towards safety.

6.    Carry a cell phone: If you're heading out of the country, check with your wireless service provider about coverage or add-ons to your plan that will allow your phone to work smoothly while away. Keep your phone charged, keep it on and learn the local emergency number if it is anything other than 9-1-1. Your cell phone can be a lifeline if you get in trouble.

7.    Always carry cab fare: Don't rely on others, especially strangers, to get you from point A to B. If your friends have been drinking or there's a change of plans, make sure to have enough cash to get back to your home base.

Crimando and XBRM specialize in campus and workplace behaviors that are related to emergency and disaster and crisis preparedness. The firm trains employers and employees in the growing field of the crisis management human factors. This includes responding to economic and financial turmoil, disasters, workplace violence, terrorism, and other crisis situations. XBRM is a division of AllSector Technology Group, Inc. For more information, visit http://www.xbrm.com.


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