Page last updated: June 2022
Preventing sales of alcohol to intoxicated patrons in nightlife settings in the United Kingdom

Alcohol service to intoxicated patrons is common across nightlife settings and preventing such sales is a key priority globally. In England and Wales, three multi-component programmes have been implemented including: (1) community mobilisation, responsible beverage server (RBS) training and routine law enforcement; (2) community mobilisation and enhanced law enforcement; and, (3) community mobilisation, RBS training and enhanced law enforcement. A study estimated the association between sales of alcohol to pseudo-intoxicated patrons and implementation of three multi-component interventions in four nightlife settings.
Over 200 alcohol test purchases by pseudo-intoxicated actors were implemented at both pre and post-intervention. Pre-intervention, 20.9% of sales were refused. Post-intervention, 42.1%, 68.8% and 74.0% of sales were refused in areas with intervention 1, 2, and 3 respectively. The odds of service refusal were higher for all interventions, with the highest odds when the intervention included enhanced law enforcement (adjusted odds ratios, interventions 1, 2, 3: 2.6, 7.1, 14.4). Service refusal was higher if the test purchase was implemented on a Saturday/Sunday night; and lower if implemented in a nightclub or if age verification was requested at the bar.
Community-based multi-component interventions were associated with significant increases in service refusal to pseudo-intoxicated actors in nightlife settings in England and Wales. Effects were stronger for interventions including enhanced law enforcement, and particularly if all intervention components were implemented.
Source: Quigg Z, Butler N, Hughes K, Bellis MA. Effects of multi-component programmes in preventing sales of alcohol to intoxicated patrons in nightlife settings in the United Kingdom. Addict Behav Rep. 2022 Mar 21;15:100422.
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