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Identifying intoxicated patrons

And how to handle related situationsIdentifying intoxicated patrons

BAC (blood alcohol concentration) and calculationsAlcohol percentagesBAC in men and womenSigns of intoxicationHandling intoxicated customersLaws related to your stateWhat you will learn

The definition of blood alcohol content is the concentration of alcohol in one's bloodstream, expressed as a percentage. Blood alcohol content, or BAC, is used to determine whether a person is legally intoxicated, especially under a driving while intoxicated law.

Unless a person has developed a very high tolerance for alcohol, a BAC rating of 0.20% represents very serious intoxication. In general most first-time drinkers are unconscious by about 0.15%. A range of 0.35% to 0.40% usually represents potentially fatal alcohol poisoning.BAC (Blood alcohol content)

BAC (Cont.)

BAC (Cont.)

BAC differences in men and women

According to the Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, men and women are not equal when consuming alcohol. Men are said to handle more alcohol than women. In 30 minutes, consuming a standard mixed drink with .60 ounces of alcohol will give a 25 year old 170 lb. man a BAC of .018 and 25 year old 130 lb. woman a BAC of .027.


BAC Calculator

Go to the website, play around!

The previous charts and calculations are generic, and when consuming alcohol/serving customers, the following other factors need to be taken into consideration:

Alcohol toleranceWeightAmount of sleepMedicationAmount of food consumedPercentage of alcohol in drinks consumedBAC (CONT.)

According to the previous charts, a 120 pound women is driving impaired at .05 BAC. That is equivalent to 2 drinks in 1 hour. In very rare cases, this would prove to be true, and this is not always the case. The most important thing to remember when serving drinks is to observe the customer and note obvious intoxicated behavior. We will explore these behaviors in the next slide.Alcohol Tolerance: things to consider

Examples and explanations of signs of intoxication

Slurred speech/no speechStumblingHeavy eyelidsLoud speechBloodshot eyesSmell of alcohol on breathIntoxicated behaviors: obvious signs

Increased profanityLiquid courageClose proximityIncreased cigarette smokingOverspendingRepeating his or herselfConfused speechCryingIncreased leaningIncreased staring (the Care Bear stare)Increased communication (on phone)Heavy walkingIntoxicated behavior: not so obvious signs

Often when people become intoxicated, they are more inclined to talk to people they do not know. This is known as liquid courage. This term is best described as when a man talks to random women at a bar, for example hitting on them or asking for their number. Watch for this behavior when you are working.

Liquid Courage

When a patron is intoxicated, their sense of positioning is thrown off. Many intoxicated customers (males and females) will position themselves oddly close to the person they are trying to talk to. As a bartender, you may have a customer lean over the bar and speak/yell in your ear, even when this behavior is not needed. This is a sign of intoxication that goes unnoticed. Watch for this behavior when bartending.Close proximity

Some patrons tend to smoke more when they drink. It might be difficult to tell an intoxicated person from a sober person in this case, but observe the customers that have been at your establishment for long hours, and take note if they show signs of increased cigarette smoking.Intoxicated customers also tend to start spending more money as the night goes on. If you notice a customers spending's start to increase drastically, keep an eye on them for other obvious signs of intoxication. More money is GREAT, but not at the expense of your job. Increased smoking/overspending

Example- asking for a drink 4 or 5 times when you have already helped them/are helping another customerExample- Asking for a drink that does not make sense- Grey Goose and vodka, Jager Bombs instead of Vegas Bombs, or changing their order multiple times.Repeating/confused speech

If you see a customer constantly leaning on a door, bar, etc., this means they are having trouble standing and in most cases should be removed from the establishment.Increased staring is also related to drug abuse. This can be a sign of intoxication and should be noted alongside other signs. Increased leaning/staring

Monitor customers for signs of intoxication, note any changes in behaviorIf customer is obviously intoxicated, calmly offer a glass of waterIf a customer becomes angry or unruly, repeat your reasoning and notify your managerIf the customer still does not oblige when speaking to a manager or bouncer, he or she may be removed from the establishment

*Do not let a customer degrade or talk down to you. YOU are the person in charge. If you feel uncomfortable cutting a customer off, notify a manager immediately.Handling intoxicated customers

If you feel a patron is reaching early stages of intoxication, there are some drinks and diversions you can offer to ensure you are not over serving

Mixed shots instead of straight shots Mixed drinks instead of shotsLight beers instead of heavy beersSingle shot drinks instead of doubles

*You can also add light ice to drinks and add more juice or soda*When offering mixed shots, use fun names and colors. This can be easily done with light liquors and flavored juices.Diversions to consider

Read through the scenarios and write down on a piece of paper how you would handle them. You and your instructor will talk through your decision after the module is completeHandling different scenarios

Lets say a patron (man) walks up and orders a light beer. You suspect slight intoxication since he had previously taken 3 shots of straight liquor in 1 hour, but he is not showing any obvious signs. In this case, offer the beer and closely monitor their behavior throughout the night. You notice their eyes start to droop and slight swaying back and forth. The customer then begins to speak loudly to his friends and hit on random women. At this point, you notice obvious signs of intoxication. He then asks you for a shot of hard liquor. What would you do?Handling the situation: A generic scenario

A woman is out with her friends at your establishment. She is drinking cheap vodka with cranberry juice (1 ounce drinks). She looks to be approx. 120 pounds. In the past 2 hours, she has already had 4 drinks, but it is early in the night and this bar appears to be her first stop. At the moment she seems totally fine and is holding herself together, no stumbling, no slurring, walking straight. She then walks up to you and asks for a round of shots, but does not know what to order. What would you suggest?Handling the situation: a generic scenario

Additional Assessment

Role Play: All employees, new and old, will engage in role-play. Different scenarios will be drawn from a hat, and the old employees will act this out. The new employees will then be behind the bar and decide the best outcome/solution.Strategic questioning: The manager on duty will ask random questions throughout the day to ensure the learner is paying attention. This will keep them alert and informed as well as constantly learning.

Additional Assessment

Observation: On the employees first night shift, a manager will be closely watching the employee to see if he or she is handling different situations the right way. The manager can step in at any time to correct the employee if they seem to be having trouble.

Shadowing: The new employee will be required to shadow veteran employees during 2 shifts before beginning his or her first busy night shift.

Recall: Learners must write down a list of 10 signs of intoxication (obvious and not so obvious).

Additional Assessment

In some states and cases, the person serving alcohol is responsible for accidents or injuries to person consuming alcohol

It is illegal in every state to serve alcohol to a minor (under 21)

Leaving establishments with alcohol is only allowed in certain states

Alcohol laws according to each state:https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0388-alcohol-laws-state

Additional informationNote differences in laws with your state and other states

As your journey begins as a bartender, you will be put in a lot of different situations, good and bad. You are expected to handle these situations in a calm and professional manner. The more you are exposed to different scenarios, the better you can equip yourself with the resources and knowledge needed to handle them. As a bartender, you are the person in charge of serving and cutting customers off. Be alert, be observant, be assertive. Have fun!Time to apply