Home > WORLD NEWS > This Straw Allows You to Know If You’ve Been Slipped a Date Rape Drug

This Straw Allows You to Know If You’ve Been Slipped a Date Rape Drug

(ANTIMEDIA) — Date rapists often prey on those who fail to see their drink has been spiked, but three high school students in Florida may have just developed a tool to outfox the predators. Their Smart Straw exposes the most common date rape drugs that would otherwise be invisible.

Three girls attending Gulliver Preparatory School near Miami, Florida, recently won the Miami Herald’s Business Plan Challenge with their drug-detecting innovation, which they call Smart Straws. Unlike other test kits, these straws are easily carried and don’t attract much attention from those unaware of their true purpose.

Carolina Baigorri, Susana Cappello, and Victoria Roca competed against around 300 other competitors, but their work isn’t done yet. They plan to continue developing the straws, which currently test for GHB and ketamine, the most common date rape drugs. The devices have two test strips that turn blue if either substance is present in either alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks.

In addition to expanding the test to include other drugs, the girls told A Plus that they may pursue a patent and even change the product’s name.

“We might have to change the name to Safety Straw since McDonald’s came out with a ‘smart straw’ last month that is good for drinking shakes,” Cappello told A Plus.

It remains to be seen how profitable such an instrument could be, but the girls found that 85 percent of Northwestern University students said they would use such a straw, the Miami Herald reported. Half of the respondents knew somebody who had been drugged at a party.

The team is in negotiations with a drug test kit maker over the manufacture of Smart Straws, but in the meantime is raising funds through crowdsourcing, according to the Herald.

However, not everyone is excited about the new potentially protective commodity. Dr. Elizabeth Yuko, who has a Ph.D. in bioethics, wrote on the SheKnows blog — where she is the health and sex editor — that “the more ‘tools’ we have to assist us in our own rape prevention, the more we’re blamed when something goes wrong.”

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