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Marines At Camp Pendleton Face Random Alcohol Tests

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CAMP PENDLETON (CBSLA.com) — The U.S. Marine Corps is set to begin cracking down on binge drinking at Camp Pendleton and at bases across the country.

KNX 1070’s Tom Reopelle reports Marines will be subjected to random breathalyzer tests twice a year beginning next month.

Any Marine or sailor who tests positive for a blood alcohol limit of .01 or higher will be sent for counseling, while anyone producing a .04 result or higher will be sent to medical personnel to see if they are fit for duty.

A single alcoholic drink can result in a positive .01 result. A .04 blood alcohol limit is half the legal limit for drunk driving.

The tests will be conducted at Camp Pendleton, Miramar, and other bases after a 2008 study by the Department of Defense showed a sharp rise in binge drinking among active military over the past decade.

Active-duty Marines would not comment until the policy is implemented.

CBS News military analyst Jeff McCausland said the move is the military’s latest effort to discourage drinking on base.

“We’ve seen more and more there’s an effort to, if you will, de-glamourize alcohol in all the military services,” said McCausland. “When I was a young officer, frequently we would drink beer at lunch…they don’t even serve it in most officers’ clubs that I’ve been in anymore.”

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