Sugary, high-alcohol energy drinks that are popular with college students who want to get drunk quickly and cheaply came under renewed scrutiny Monday as investigators announced that nine freshmen had been hospitalized after drinking them at an off-campus party.
Several states are considering outlawing the drinks and at least two universities have banned them from campus while the Food and Drug Administration reviews their safety.
Washington state Attorney General Rob McKenna called for the drinks to be banned and sent a letter to the FDA on Monday, saying the drinks "present a serious threat to public health and safety."
The issue received new attention after the Oct. 8 party in Roslyn, a picturesque mountain town known as the place where part of the 1990s television series "Northern Exposure" was filmed.
Police first responded to a report of an unconscious female in a grocery store parking lot and learned about the party from her friends. At the home, officers found a chaotic scene, with students from nearby Central Washington University passed out and so intoxicated that investigators thought they had overdosed on drugs.