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Don’t be a statistic

Ensuring a military member’s awareness of the limitations and consequences of alcohol abuse and driving under the influence can have on a career could prevent them from crossing the line of another drink or the decision to get behind the wheel.  To learn more about the consequences of and alcohol abuse, call Alcohol, Drug Abuse Program and Treatment at 883-8373.  (U.S. Air Force photo/Samuel King Jr.)

Ensuring a military member’s awareness of the limitations and consequences of alcohol abuse and driving under the influence can have on a career could prevent them from crossing the line of another drink or the decision to get behind the wheel. To learn more about the consequences of and alcohol abuse, call Alcohol, Drug Abuse Program and Treatment at 883-8373. (U.S. Air Force photo/Samuel King Jr.)

EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. -- At the Alcohol Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment office, it comes down to a simple message:  please do not drink and drive. There are major repercussions.


Eglin’s driving under the influence rate has remained fairly constant in the last five years. There have been 39 reported DUI cases to the Alcohol Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment office from Jan. 1 to Dec. 8, 2017. The annual average for the last five years is 43.

Is one too many drinks worth $10,000?  That is the average one would pay in fines and legal fees after a DUI. Beyond that, there is the potential for an Article 15, separation from the military, driver’s license revocation, jail time, injury and even death.

According to the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration, approximately 29 people in the United States die every day in alcohol-impaired vehicle crashes - that's about one person every 50 minutes.

Despite such statistics, far too many people drive a motor vehicle after consuming alcohol. Consider this sobering statistic from Mothers Against Drunk Driving:  An average drunk driver has driven drunk more than 80 times before first arrest.  Further, people drive drunk more than 300,000 times each day, but only about 2,800 are arrested.

Unfortunately, many people believe as long as they have only consumed a few drinks, they are “good to go” as far as driving.  Keep this in mind: impairment begins with the first drink. Alcohol is a substance that not only reduces the function of the brain, it also impairs reasoning and muscle coordination. All these abilities are essential and critical to safely operating a vehicle.

It is illegal in all 50 states to drive with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher. However, even a small amount of alcohol can affect one’s driving ability. At a BAC of .05, a person is twice as likely to have a motor vehicle accident, than if they had nothing to drink at all, according to drinkwise.org.

Even one DUI is one too many.  Each DUI is totally unnecessary if one is committed to this principle: if you drink, do not drive.

At ADAPT, we ask service members to be good wingmen/battle buddies and encourage anyone they feel may have substance-related issues to seek help.

For more information, call ADAPT at 883-9352.

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