State surveys show high rates of teen drinking - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

State surveys show high rates of teen drinking

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KENNEWICK, Wash. - A new survey shows high rates of teen drinking here in Washington. The annual survey called "Monitoring the Future" asked 8th, 10th and 12th graders about binge drinking which is five or more drinks in a row. The survey showed that one in five tenth graders are considered binge drinkers.

In the survey, high school seniors were also asked about rates of "extreme binge drinking" which is having 10 or more drinks in a single occasion.  The survey found that 11% of high school seniors said they had more than 10 alcoholic drinks in a single setting, and 6% said they had consumed more than 15. The national findings on the prevalence of underage drinking are similar to Washington's Healthy Youth Survey. David Dickinson, Director of Behavioral Health and Recovery, says their main goal is to get adults to set positive example for kids. "One of the best ways for children to be impacted is to hear and see that message from their parents. In other words, parents who talk with their children about alcohol, about the effects of alcohol, talk with them about having healthy examples," said Dickinson.

Among Washington 8th graders, 41% who drink alcohol say they get it from home and about 24% say their parents have not talked with them about alcohol and its risks.