Preventing alcohol-related incidents

Education and preparedness are key in the prevention of alcohol-related incidents for both you and your teammates. The value of preventing these incidents is immeasurable. The fact is, involvement in alcohol-related incidents can have detrimental effects on your career, your relationships and your family. Airmen who are reprimanded for alcohol-related incidents, such as driving under the influence of alcohol, are at higher risk for suffering relationship issues in their personal life and at increased risk of self-harm.

The great news is that each and every alcohol-related incident can be prevented. You can protect yourself, your career, and your family from the harmful effects of alcohol-related incidents by owning your limits. Educate yourself early and often. Know the host nation laws. Understand how alcohol effects your body and mind. Make a plan before you engage in alcohol consumption.

Photo by Monthira /

Just like in the United States, our host nation has laws that prohibit driving while under the influence of alcohol. However, Germany’s laws tend to be even stricter than those in the United States. Keep in mind that operating a scooter or ebike, even on the sidewalk, will result in a DUI citation from the local police. Whereas the legal limit for blood alcohol content in the United States is .08, in Germany the legal limit is .05. Be aware of the comparatively lower legal limits and the large serving sizes of alcohol when creating your plan for responsible consumption of alcohol.

Owning your limits means knowing how alcohol affects you and making a plan that allows you to be responsible when consuming alcohol. Along with that, if you or someone close to you notices that you have a pattern of engaging in risky or unsafe behaviors while drinking, be proactive by seeking out resources to assist you in owning your limits. Likewise, if someone you know has a concerning relationship with alcohol, be willing to engage them in conversations about how they can learn to own their limits.

When we get comfortable having open discussions about difficult topics, we learn from each other and we create a culture that promotes healthy and adaptive behaviors. If you are a supervisor, talk with your troops about ways that you own your limits and brainstorm ways people can help themselves and others to own their limits with alcohol. A great platform for practicing these discussions is the monthly GRIT Check 6 talks that you already facilitate. Don’t be afraid to tailor your GRIT discussions to the needs of your people. You can find information about how you can make Operation GRIT work for you at

GRIT is one way we invest in Airmen at Ramstein. We use our monthly Check 6 talks to stay connected with each other, to learn from each other, and to connect Airmen with the resources they need at the first sign they are struggling. When it comes to Airmen who need help owning their limits with alcohol, Ramstein ADAPT is here to help. ADAPT can be reached at 479-2390 or 06371-405-2390.