Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Bottoms up!

More than 80 percent of Dutch children aged between nine and 15 say they have tried alcohol and on average start drinking at the age of 12, according to a survey. The teen web site Kaboem said Monday a survey of 2,500 young people found nearly 40 percent had their first alcoholic beverage with a parent.

Some 68 percent of Dutch 15-year-olds admitted drinking alcohol often and a third of respondents said that when they drink they have enough to get drunk. As in many other countries, boys drink more frequently than girls, the survey found. Forty percent of 15-year-old boys said they had been drunk at least once.

The European School Survey project on alcohol and other drugs, published earlier in December, said Dutch youngsters drank more often than their peers across Europe and were among the most likely to binge drink.