Washington state issues emergency ban on caffeinated alcohol beverages

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The state Liquor Control Board on Wednesday approved an emergency ban of caffeinated alcohol drinks, the type of beverage that sickened nine Central Washington University students last month during an off-campus party.

In the unanimous vote, commissioners said they took the action because of public health and safety concerns. The ban will take effect Nov. 17 and remain in place for 120 days while the board goes through rule-making procedures for a permanent ban.

Gov. Chris Gregoire is holding a news conference now about the ban.

In a news release last month, the governor said she is “concerned about the rapid market growth of pre-mixed alcohol energy drinks and their popularity with young people.”

Full story: State bans ‘blackout in a can’ caffeinated alcohol beverages