Tuesday, 18th November 2003 .
Drink kits set to defy sex predators
Schoolies and parents snap up new drink spike detector
TEENAGE girls and concerned parents are buying a new product aimed at helping combat sexual predators at parties and nightclubs.
As thousands of Year 12s prepare for the week-long Schoolies celebration, many are concerned about their vulnerability.
Drink Spike Detector kits are now selling in Sunshine Coast pharmacies for $13.95 for six tests.
They have been designed to slow an alarming rise in ''date rape'' attacks.
Alcohol is the drug most commonly associated with sexual assault and incidents of spiking are becoming a major concern for police and educators.
Illicit drugs, including GHB and Ketamine, are slipped into beverages of unsuspecting victims.
The drugs are colourless, odourless and can be very dangerous when mixed with alcohol.
Victims are left dazed and their memory loss makes giving evidence and finding attackers a difficult task.
The symptoms also are believed to be the reason many assaults go unreported.
Anyone suspecting their drink may have been tampered with is advised to test it by using one of the detector cards.
Using a swizzle stick or straw, a drop of the drink is placed on one of the test characters.
If the circle changes to a darker blue, the drink has been tampered with.
Bill Irvine, of Sunland's Amcal Pharmacy, said the kits were about to be part of a major promotion.
Mr Irvine said he had sold dozens of them and believed they were a smart move, given the rising incidents of spiking at rave parties and in nightclubs.
Jason Litzow, of Mooloolaba Central Amcal, said he had sold four kits to women seeking some peace of mind.