Navy: Random alcohol tests for sailors in US

6:24 PM, Jan 23, 2013   |    comments
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By BROCK VERGAKIS / Associated Press

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) -- The Navy says its sailors in the United States will be subject to random blood-alcohol tests starting next month.

Any sailor whose blood-alcohol level is .04 or higher when reporting for duty won't be allowed to work, the Navy says. In all 50 states and the District of Columbia, a driver with a 0.08 percent blood-alcohol is considered drunk.

The Navy outlined its policy for conducting the tests throughout the fleet on Wednesday. A pilot program was conducted among 13 commands this past summer. By May, nearly 2,000 commands will have handheld alcohol-detection devices.

The Navy says a positive test result won't be used to punish sailors, but could be used to refer them to counseling. However, sailors who refuse to submit to a test could face disciplinary action.

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