USS HARRY S. TRUMAN, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) hosted a Driving Under the Influence (DUI) Fair aboard ship Dec. 8-10 to stress the importance of alcohol responsibility.
The DUI fair was mandatory for all Sailors and Marines under the age of 25 and incorporated eight separate stations to encourage crew members to think of the consequences that can result from making the decision to drive while intoxicated.
"The main mission of the DUI fair is to increase awareness of Sailors and Marines on board," said Senior Chief Aviations Boatswain's Mate [Equipment] (AW/SW) Ernest Taylor. "The sequence of events incorporated in the DUI fair expresses the consequences and the after-effects that come from a DUI. We are expressing to our service members the Navy's position of zero-tolerance policy for drinking and driving."
The 10-person groups began the training in a classroom that was decorated as a club scene. From there, crew members were introduced to Virginia State Trooper Greg Duke.
Duke has been with the Virginia State Police for seven years and feels it is imperative that Sailors and Marines are aware of the consequences of a DUI on both their personal life and career.
"Speeding, fatigue and DUIs are the top three killers for service members. DUIs are at the top of that list," said Duke. "Volunteering to come out here and have the opportunity to talk to Sailors and Marines one-on-one will ensure they have the knowledge to make good decisions."
Other stations that the fair participants visited including visiting a person that they had injured at the hospital, going to captain's mast, receiving a mock sentence in civilian court and spending time in jail. The tour concluded with a "funeral" for the person whose life they took in Truman's chapel.
Each group was led by one of 200 tour guides who volunteered from various departments. Several more crew members volunteered to serve as actors for the various scenarios.
Aerographer's Mate 1st Class (AW/SW) Timothy Harris volunteered to act as the priest during the funeral service.
"The visualization of the casket strikes crew members with a real-life feeling," said Harris. "Looking at some of the faces during this particular scene, I know some members will take something from this and carry it with them for the rest of their life. If we help save at least one person, we have accomplished our goal."
At the end of the DUI Fair, Sailors were required to fill out a survey on the overall fair to ensure that that the fairs continue to remain relevant and effective.
"We want as much feedback as possible," said Taylor. "There are always ways to improve awareness to the crew. Whatever it takes to get through to Sailors and Marines to know the severity of a DUI situation, we want to know about it."
"The whole fair felt so realistic," said Aviation Boatswain's Mate [Equipment] Airman Michael Sadler. "I will take this experience with me and teach what I have learned to others."
For more news from USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn75/.