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11th March 2013

Wristbands force Cardiff students to ask how they ‘got home last night’

Students driven home by a Safety Bus will be given a yellow wristband asking them to question how much they drank last night

Students in Cardiff could find themselves with a new yellow wristband when they wake up the morning after the night before, asking: “How did you get home last night?”

The scheme is co-run by the city’s universities and local police authority, and offers free lifts to students who’ve had a bit too much to drink, allowing them to get home safely.

It hopes to highlight the risks posed by too much alcohol.

A police officer and a small group of student volunteers drive around the city in a minibus each night and stop to help anyone they see in trouble.

Recipients of this service have bright yellow bands slipped around their wrists saying “How did you get home? Safely, thanks to the Student Safety Bus”, reminding them the next morning that there was someone caring for them when they were a little worse for wear.

It is hoped that students who are driven home will think-again how much they drink the next time that they go out.

Emma Robson, the universities’ joint student liaison officer said: “In the morning [the wristbands will] hopefully encourage the wearers to think a bit more about how they came to have it in the first place.

“We were concerned that we can take people out of danger, but that when they wake up in the morning they underestimate just how vulnerable they were. Sometimes they’ve even forgotten altogether how they got home, and just shrug and laugh the whole thing off.

“The yellow wristbands are slipped on, but in the morning they’ll hopefully encourage the wearers to think a bit more about how they came to have it in the first place,” she said.

Third year Chemistry Student Becky Pyke told the Mancunion that she did not think that a free mini bus would necessarily be a good idea.

Asked if she thought it would dissuade students from drinking excessively, she said: “I don’t think it would at all – it would have the opposite effect. People will think ‘well if I do get really drunk, I’ll have a free lift home.”

Another student agreed that the yellow bands may not have the desired effect: “They’d be badges of honour to some people. If I had one though, I wouldn’t care – I’d just cut it off as soon as I woke up in the morning.”

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