WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - Thousands of students coming to West Lafayette each year get new experiences. One of those new experiences may be alcohol.
"We have thousands of kids who are away from their parents for the first time in their lives," West Lafayette Police Lieutenant Troy Harris said. "[There is] no supervision, maybe no experience with alcohol."
If your friend drinks too much, has a potentially deadly medical issue arise and are underage and drinking, what do you do?
The lifeline law signed by Governor Mitch Daniels in 2012 will give a minor consuming alcohol immunity if they make the decision to get their intoxicated friend medical attention if they need it.
"Since both the medical amnesty policy here at Purdue and the lifeline law we have seen situations where people have used it," Purdue University Fire Chief Kevin Ply said.
Ply said he's seen the law in action, but not enough students know about it.
A 19-year-old IU student's death at a house party last week has brought new attention to the law. It is still unknown if alcohol played a role in the death, but police said friends did not make a medical call until six hours after the incident.
However, not every alcohol related crime is covered under the law.
"What is covered by law are such things as public intoxication, minor in possession by consumption and transportation of alcohol," Harris said.
Driving while intoxicated and drug offenses are not covered by the lifeline law.
The lifeline law was spearheaded by a group of college students on Purdue's campus.
"Last year we worked on promoting it and promoting the idea that this law does exist, that you are protected by this law," Former Purdue Student Body President Joe Rust said.
Rust was part of student government when the idea was the school's medical amnesty policy. Then, he followed his peers to legislators to make it law.
"Really the message we're still trying to send is no matter what the most important thing you need to be doing is making the call," Rust said.
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