Airmen Against Drunk Driving

  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Ionne Barnes-Joshua
  • 452nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron first sergeant
The effects of drinking and driving can be devastating and, at times, fatal. Social drinking impairs the drinker's perception, judgment and slows motor skills. 

Injuries such as scrapes, bruises and sprained ankles are not uncommon and, in some cases, drinkers are a danger to not only themselves but to others if they decide to drive. Excessive drinking destroys information-processing skills, which makes drinkers extremely dangerous, usually because they have no perception of danger to either themselves or others. 

Motor vehicle driving requires the harmonized interplay of all three skills. The lack of these skills is what causes the greatest detriment, both emotionally and physically, which can result in the victims suffering from major injuries, loss of a limb or life. 

The serious consequences of drinking and driving are also damaging to good order and discipline in the day to day operations of the Air Force, thus the basis of our squadron's "Drive drunk, lose a stripe" policy, "Driving while drunk" is only part of the problem. Our Airmen are our most vital resource and it is our duty to protect them. 

The majority of the men and women who join the military today are young and beginning to develop the skills they need to become mature Airmen. Alcohol consumption has become a high interest item to the upper echelon. 

A disturbing trend has been set by the illegal alcohol consumption by military personnel. Many Airmen have found themselves as victims or the cause of severe accidents resulting from illegal drinking and driving. 

The Air Force has zero tolerance for underage drinking, which is a crime and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the Uniformed Code of Military Justice and the California Vehicle Code/state law. 

The Air Force has provided a program to deal with this problem the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment (ADAPT) program. ADAPT's goal is to rehabilitate Airmen from the disease of alcoholism with a realistic approach, through the use of treatment and training that will teach them how to overcome their addiction and abuse of alcohol. 

We are now more aware of the damaging effects of drinking and driving, and can be a part of the solution as you continue to be an effective Wingman. For additional information, contact your sergeant, chaplain or family resource manager.