Mardi Gras underage alcohol sales: Shreveport second in state
An ATC agent and his K9 visit along a South Louisiana Mardi Gras parade route. (Source: Louisiana ATC)
BATON ROUGE, LA (KSLA) -
Shreveport ended up with the second-highest rate of underage alcohol sales along parade routes in the state this Mardi Gras season, according to the Louisiana Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control.
In Shreveport, the ATC says 46 percent of vendors sold alcohol to minors along Mardi Gras parade routes.
Of the 13 checks conducted by agents along the Shreveport parade rouges, the ATC says 6 sales were made to minors by alcoholic beverage retailers.
The only city with vendors that sold more alcoholic beverages to minors during parades was Baton Rouge. Agents along the capital city parade routes found 47 percent of alcohol sales to underage drinkers during 15 checks with 7 sales.
Here's the rundown for the rest of the rest of the state:
-New Orleans: 83 checks, 29 sales = 35% sold
-Lafayette: 13 checks, 4 sales = 31% sold
-Houma: 10 checks, 3 sales = 30% sold
-Metairie: 37 checks, 10 sales = 27% sold
-Avoyelles parish: 9 checks, 2 sales = 22% sold
-Slidell: 14 checks, 3 sales = 21% sold
-Pointe Coupee parish (New Roads/Livonia): 18 checks, 3 sales = 17% sold
-Crowley: 15 checks, 2 sales = 13% sold
Each year, ATC conducts a pro-active visit to businesses before the carnival season begins. Agents discuss what the laws are and what the businesses can do to help serve alcohol responsibly.
Agents then look for minors in possession of alcohol before, during, and after the parades. Underage individuals are sent inside the businesses located along the parade routes to try and purchase alcohol.
Most of the underage operatives are 17 years old or under and are not allowed to use fake ID's.
"ATC understands that alcohol is a major part of Mardi Gras; we just want to ensure that it is being sold and consumed responsibly. A safe season is a successful and happy one," said Commissioner Troy Hebert.