If you're under the age of 19 and a resident of Long Island, your days of purchasing energy drinks at your leisure may soon be over. Suffolk County officials are working to ban the sale of energy drinks to anyone under 19. Legislation mandating a specific age was proposed a few weeks ago, and has been voted on by the Suffolk County Board of Health.
"If a young person is in a strenuous activity, caffeine intoxication can lead to cardiac arrhythmia," said William Spender, a doctor and Suffolk County legislator who might sponsor the bill. County health commissioner James Tomarken adds that additional stimulants like sugar can make the effects of the caffeine considerably worse.
The American Beverage Association says there is no need to ban teens from purchasing energy drinks, arguing that a ban would also require a minimum purchase age for coffee and tea for consistency. Could this mean all energy drinks may go the way of Four Loko, which was altered to remove caffeine after it was banned in New York back in 2010?