Parents' campaign to ban energy drinks after son's tragic death
The parents of a 16-year-old teenager who claim their son died from consuming caffeine loaded energy drinks are fighting to raise the legal age limit to purchase the controversial drinks.
Sean and Heidi Cripe from South Carolina received a phone call that their son Davis had died on April 26, 2017.
The heartbroken parents claim their son “chugged” an energy drink, a coffee and a soft drink within a two-hour period, which led to his death.
A corner’s report later revealed that the teen had died from a caffeine-induced cardiac event, with probable arrhythmia.
Mr and Mrs Cripe have been battling for the past two years to ban the sale of energy drinks to teenagers under the age of 18 in South Carolina and are one step closer to the ban after a sub-committee passed the bill on Friday.
The proposed ban will now face a full committee.
"It'll be huge, not only for our son Davis but knowing that here on out other kids will be protected," Mrs Cripe told NBC.
The heartbroken parents are sharing their journey to ban energy drink sales to under 18’s in a Facebook group saying they want to protect other families from the same tragedy.
“We are working to get laws passed in Indiana and South Carolina that will make it illegal for persons under the age of 18 to purchase or consume these beverages,” the grieving parents stated.
Most energy drink manufacturers recommended sales are restricted to those over the age of 16, however there was no law in place in the US state of South Carolina that requires the purchaser to show proof of age.
“So many people say it won't happen to me ... I'm telling you we are proof that it can happen at anytime to anyone,” Mr and Mrs Cripe warned other parents.
Although medical staff have debated that Davis could not have died purely from a caffeine overdose, his parents disagree.
"Fatal caffeine overdose from energy drink ingestion is impossible," said Dr. Ashley Roberts as he testified before the sub-committee.
"You need to make sure everything else is okay," added Dr Donna Seger, an emergency physician and medical toxicologist.
Davis’s parents have vowed to keep up the fight.
"I stand before you as a broken-hearted father and hope that something good can come from this," Mr Cripe said.
"Parents, please, talk to your kids about the dangers of these energy drinks," he said.
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