U.S. Fleet Forces Command (USFF) launched a beta test May 23, to obtain Fleet feedback that will help determine the most effective approach for implementation of a Navy-wide alcohol breathalyzer program.
The 21st Century Sailor and Marine initiative, announced by the Secretary of the Navy in March, outlined the Navy-wide breathalyzer program as a way to increase Fleet alcohol education and awareness and to provide commanders with another tool to ensure the health and safety of Sailors by identifying potential alcohol abuse.
USFF has selected 13 sea and shore commands to participate in the beta test, which runs from May 24 through Sept. 30. All data collected will be consolidated under a summary recommendation and forwarded to the office of the Navy's Chief of Naval Operations (OPNAV) to be considered for implementation into the final policy.
"This beta test will be used to identify, develop and make recommendations on specific processes, procedures, and policies to effectively implement the use of alcohol breathalyzers in the Navy," said USFF Fleet Master Chief Mike Stevens, who's working in coordination with USFF's Breathalyzer Implementation Team on the beta test. "By obtaining feedback from the Fleet, we're ensuring the final policy will be fully executable and will serve as a tool that benefits individual organizations and Sailors."
USFF's breathalyzer implementation team met with the leadership of all 13 commands involved in the beta test today to issue equipment, provide training and issue specific guidance. Participating commands will provide detailed feedback to the implementation team throughout the test.
Under the Navy program, the breathalyzer will be used primarily as an education and prevention tool. Breathalyzer results alone will not be used as the sole evidentiary basis for punitive or adverse administrative action.
Participating commands include, USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77); USS Kearsarge (LHD 3); USS Montpelier (SSN 765); USNS Apache (T-ATF-172); Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 2; Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 4; the staff of Commander, Submarine Forces Atlantic; Navy Expeditionary Intelligence Command, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Training and Evaluation Unit (EODTEU) 2; Navy Information Operations Command, Norfolk; Naval Computer and Telecommunications Area Master Station Atlantic; Navy Operational Support Center, Norfolk; and the USFF staff.
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