Joint Base Charleston, S.C. –
In 2011, Joint Base Charleston recorded 31 driving under the influence cases. Twenty DUIs were recorded the year before. This year, nine cases have already been recorded. At the current rate, JB Charleston will have a total of 48 DUIs by the end of the year.
To help fight the rise of DUIs, JB Charleston leadership is encouraging more Airmen to not only volunteer for Airmen Against Drunk Driving, but also to utilize the program.
AADD is an all-volunteer program, which provides free, safe, confidential rides home to military members, their families and Department of Defense civilians, who make the responsible decision not to drink and drive. The program is activated on Fridays and Saturdays from 11 p.m. to 4 a.m. AADD also operates on Sunday if Monday is a federal holiday.
"This organization provides personnel with an alternative to drinking and driving," said Staff Sgt. Stephen Kohn, 628th Security Forces Squadron Police Services non-commissioned officer in charge and JB Charleston- Air Base AADD president.
"The impact of providing a safe ride home to someone who is too intoxicated to operate a vehicle is far greater than just a simple ride," said Kohn. "It's the life of the family driving home from a vacation that you saved because you didn't allow your wingman to drive drunk. It's the financial stress that you saved your wingman by not letting him suffer the Air Force consequences of a DUI."
The program is simple. A phone call to (843) 963-AADD or 2233 will get you a safe ride home, according to Kohn.
Kohn also stressed that JB Charleston's "0-0-1-3" rule applies to responsible drinking and does not determine if you can drive and not receive a DUI.
This policy states zero underage drinking, zero DUIs, one drink per hour, not to exceed three drinks per night.
"If you drink, don't drive ... if you drive, don't drink," said Kohn. "It's just that simple, because whether you have one drink or five drinks, you still have the same risk of being pulled over and arrested for DUI. This is the education that our Airmen need to hear not only from our leadership, but from the front line supervisors that interact with them daily."
Last year, more than 4,700 hours were volunteered at JB Charleston, according to Kohn. Any military member can volunteer any weekend.
"I feel that AADD is great way for me to give back to the community and look out for my fellow Airmen and Sailors," said Airman 1st Class Christopher Curry, 628th Logistics Readiness Squadron customer service journeyman. Curry has already volunteered more than 27 hours this year to the program.
To volunteer, members must fill out the AADD Volunteer Waiver and e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Volunteers can receive the form from their squadron representative or request one from the e-mail address above.
"AADD is a great service, but it only operates with your help," said Kohn. "Support from the units is critical to the overall success of the organization. Prevent a DUI this weekend by volunteering."
For more information on AADD or to volunteer, call 843-963-5809.
(AADD is a purely voluntary organization. If you are involved in an accident, it is your responsibility to have adequate insurance to cover the cost involved. Neither AADD, the U.S. Air Force nor the Department of Defense carries any liability concerning your volunteer efforts. Do not solicit funds for picking up a member. If you choose to drive the member's vehicle, you accept all risks that come along with that decision.)