MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – Over the last few weeks, college students have been in Myrtle Beach to enjoy spring break. This week and next week, thousands of high schoolers will be in town.
With college students enjoying Myrtle Beach, many of them are 21, and they live on their own at school and know how their bodies will handle alcohol. The same can’t be said for teenagers. For many of them, it’ll be their first time drinking and their first time unsupervised.
This week and next week, troopers will be on high alert for spring breakers driving under the influence, especially near Ocean Boulevard, where most of them usually stay.
Another problem during high school spring breaks is underage alcohol sales. Many teenagers go the route of “shouldering.” That’s when an underage person finds a random person in the parking lot, and offers to pay them $20 in exchange for the stranger buying them alcohol.
Corporal Sonny Collins with the South Carolina Highway Patrol said law enforcement agencies will be watching parking lots closely and it’s not anything you’d want to get caught up in.
“There’s a penalty for that. It’s not a good decision. If you have a teenager looking for alcohol, deter them from doing that and send them elsewhere because you buying them that alcohol is not only putting you in a bad spot, if they were to go out and get in a crash or something like that, you can put yourself in a very precarious situation,” advises Cpl. Collins.
Cpl. Collins adds he hates to see it, but statistics show many kids die over spring break. They don’t know how much is too much or how their bodies will respond to alcohol. That’s a problem Cpl. Collins says he sees every year. He’s seen too many life-changing decisions made on spring break week. Or worse, he’s seen many deaths because of bad decisions.
Troopers with the South Carolina Highway Patrol talked to many high schoolers in our area urging them to make the right decisions, but Cpl. Collins said unfortunately he knows it’s not going to deter everyone.
“We try to give them the message, we try to talk to them but we know someone that is down here over the next two weeks will make a very bad decision and unfortunately there’s no coming back from that,” explains Cpl. Collins. “Once that decision has been made they have to face the consequences of that, whether it is jail, the loss of scholarships whatever it is. But hopefully, that person, others can learn from them.”
Collins said troopers will be sitting along Hwy 501 and will be visible when these spring breakers get into town. They’ll also be along the boulevard hoping their visibility will deter bad decisions.