Marines to face random blood-alcohol tests

SAN DIEGO (AP) - Marines and sailors will be subject to random blood-alcohol tests twice a year in what is billed as the toughest anti-drinking policy in the U.S. military.

The Los Angeles Times reports Monday that any Marine or sailor with a blood-alcohol level of 0.01 percent or higher may be referred for counseling. Anyone who tests at 0.04 percent or higher will be referred to medical personnel to determine fitness for duty.

In California, a driver with a 0.08 percent blood-alcohol is considered drunk.

The policy takes effect Jan. 1. Lt. Gen. R.E. Milstead Jr. says it is primarily aimed at deterrence and education but that nothing precludes commanders from handing out punishments.

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