A program called "0-0-1-3" is an alcohol abuse prevention program that promotes making responsible choices with regard to alcohol use. It supports the National Prevention Strategy to have a healthy and fit nation, by improving linkages between substance abuse, mental health, juvenile and criminal justice agencies to develop and disseminate effective models of prevention.

In 2004, Warren Air Force Base developed the 0-0-1-3 program to address alcohol misuse as a result of a base-wide survey that found that the average airman thought "unsafe" drinking began with eight drinks or more. Within the first year of implementing 0-0-1-3, alcohol-related incidents declined by 74 percent; there were 81 percent fewer cases of underage drinking and 45 percent fewer cases of drunk driving. The United States Naval Academy also implemented the program in 2006. The 0-0-1-3 program has expanded from the Air Force to schools, colleges and communities nationwide with a goal of decreasing alcohol-related incidents. Several states have implemented -0-1-3 in order to curb underage drinking.

The 0-0-1-3 program emphasizes personal responsibility and is a way to also help change the drinking culture in the military. Think of 0-0-1-3 more as a way of life. It gives people a tool that they can use when they do consume alcohol.

So, what does 0-0-1-3 actually stand for?

• 0 - Zero drinks, if you're under the age of 21.

• 0 - Zero DUIs (driving while under the influence)

• 1 - One drink per hour (amount of alcohol that the liver can process in one hour)

• 3 - No more than three drinks of alcohol per outing

0-0-1-3 is based on science and is defined as "responsible, periodic drinking" by the National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, and the National Academy of Sciences. 0-0-1-3 became a community standard for underage drinking and for responsible use of alcohol among adults. People might not follow this standard, but they will at least start counting their drinks and comparing their habits to the standard.

In order to follow 0-0-1-3 and be able to compare one's drinking habits to the standard, we need to know the size of a drink based on alcohol content.

What defines a drink?

A standard drink is equal to 13.7 grams (0.6 ounces) of pure alcohol or:

• 12 ounces of beer

• Eight ounces of malt liquor

• Five ounces of wine

• 1.5-ounces or a "shot" of 80-proof distilled spirits or liquor (e.g., gin, rum, vodka or whiskey).

Most people know that drinking alcohol can be harmful. It can affect a person's health and well-being by causing illness and injury. It can also affect a military person's career by causing them to be passed over for promotion or cause loss of time from duty.

The 0-0-1-3 program is about making responsible choices about drinking alcohol. It is not an excuse to drink every day. If you're underage or driving, don't drink; if you are of legal age to consume alcohol, be responsible. Think 0-0-1-3 before you drink.

• 0 - Zero drinks, if you're under the age of 21

• 0 - Zero DUIs (driving while under the influence)

• 1 - One drink per hour

• 3 - No more than three drinks per event