It's ok to ‘drunk dial’

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Robert Farkas
  • 62nd Aerial Port Squadron commander
Each of us serving in the military today is a volunteer. We took an oath and hopefully, understood that if called upon, we could be put in a position where our life is at risk especially when we deploy to a war zone.

Conversely, a lot of Airmen are at risk everyday at home station due to the nature of their job, whether it is flying an airplane or operating heavy machinery. Bottom line, your duty in the Air Force is inherently dangerous.

However, we are all provided ample safety training with our job which includes the wearing of personal protective equipment if required. There are technical orders, manuals, checklists, safety reports and plenty of computer-based training modules to complete.

We are bombarded with all aspects of how to perform the job safe as long as we follow the correct procedures.

Knowing that you could ultimately give up your life defending this great nation of ours, why then take the unnecessary risk of getting behind the wheel after drinking?

There are more deaths in one year in the United States from driving under the influence than the total amount of American servicemembers killed from the Iraq war and current operations in Afghanistan.

If we assume the risk and take all the necessary precautions at our duty, why ignore safety and other precautions when off duty?

As a commander, I am fully aware of the consequences drinking and driving have on a career and the impact it can have on a unit.

Recently, we have experienced a spike in DUIs and thankfully, no one has been seriously injured or worse yet, killed. Every DUI that I am familiar with involved the driver not taking the precautionary steps of having a plan or if the plan failed, using a backup such as calling a fellow Airman, supervisor or even their commander for a ride.

We can never totally eliminate the dangers associated with being in the military, whether it is being close in proximity to the fight or flying in the air, but we can, and we must, eliminate the dangers with drinking and driving.

Store your wingman, your supervisor, your First Sergeant or even your commander's number in your cell phone. Along with those numbers, include the number to McChord Field's very own Airmen Against Drunk Driving, 982-AADD or 982-2233. The next time your plan falls through...go ahead, make the call and get home safe. Save a a career!