Alcohol Poisoning Wouldn’t Happen to Me…


  • Plan how you will get home safely
  • Don’t drive if you’ve had any alcohol; use a designated driver
  • Keep track of the number of alcoholic drinks you consume
  • Pace drinks to one or fewer an hour
  • Alternate alcohol and non-alcoholic drinks 
  • Stay with the same group of friends the entire time 
  • Avoid drinking games


The body can process about one standard drink per hour. If you drink more than one drink per hour, such as taking shots, your BAC will rise and your body will begin to shut down. Even after a person stops drinking, alcohol in the stomach and intestine continues to enter the bloodstream and circulate throughout the body. It is dangerous to assume the person will be fine by sleeping it off. 


Physiological differences between men and women affect the way alcohol is processed through the body. Even if a man and a woman are the same size and drink the same number and type of drinks, the woman’s BAC level will be higher due to the body’s ability to dilute alcohol and metabolize alcohol.



Alcohol poisoning is a medical emergency. Clemson University’s first priority is the safety of our students. If you think a friend might have alcohol poisoning, please get help. The Clemson University Police Department (864-656-2222) or 911 are the quickest resources to help a friend in need. 

Signs of Alcohol Poisoning: 

  • Vomiting
  • Confusion
  • Slow breathing (less than eight breaths per minute)
  • Irregular breathing (a gap of 10 seconds or more between breaths)
  • Blue or pale skin
  • Low body temperature
  • Unconsciousness or inability to stay conscious 

What to Do If You Suspect a Person Has Alcohol Poisoning:

  • Do not wait for all symptoms to be present
  • Be aware that a person who has passed  out may die
  • Call 911 immediately if the person is unconscious
  • Turn the person on their side to ensure open airways – see the BACCHUS Maneuver video
  • Do not administer any food or beverages
  • BAC can continue to rise even while he or she is passed out
  • Don’t assume the person will be fine by just sleeping it off
  • Stay with the person until help arrives 

To learn more, visit


  • 54% of first-year Clemson students have not used alcohol in the past 30 days. (NCHA) 
  • 83% of Clemson students who choose to drink eat before and/or during drinking. (NCHA) 
  • 90% of Clemson students who choose to drink stay with the same group of friends the entire time drinking. (NCHA) 
  • 97% of Clemson students reported they would respect someone who intervened to prevent sexual violence. (Aspire to Be Well Data)  



The stats above are based on Clemson University student responses on the National College Health Assessment 2016 survey and Aspire to Be Well Program data.

.08 BAC Legal Limit. (n.d.). Retrieved from