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toxins Teen Alcoholism

Teen Alcoholism:  Problems for Americas Youth

In 1991, a study by the United States Surgeon Generals office stated that 8 million out of the 20.7 million young people in grades 7 through 12 drank alcoholic beverages every week.  It went on to say that 454,000 of those youngsters reported weekly binges (Claypool 21).  In the United States and all over the world underage teens are drinking, and it may be because they just dont know about alcohol and its effects (Monroe 56).  Underage or teen drinking is a major problem today that is increasing more and more, and something needs to be done to stop this increase and to control the number of underage drinkers.  
There are many statistics that show just how big this problem is amongst our youth.  One frightening statistic that shows how much this problem has been increasing is that between 1948 and 1988 the percent of teen drinkers increased by 57 percent (Nielsen 47).  Many parents may think that their child may not drink until they are much older, but the average age that teenagers try alcohol is between the ages twelve and sixteen (9).  Also, a 1995 study taken by the University of Michigan stated that 35 out of 100 high school seniors drank 5 or more drinks at one time at least once during their two week survey period (Claypool 10).   A recent poll by the National Association of Student Councils found that alcohol was the leading school problem and 46 percent [of students] said it was the schools most serious problem (Monroe 53).  This may be because alcohol is very dangerous because it is a poisonous drug that can be very addictive (Mitchell 6).
In order to help solve this problem of underage drinking we must first try to understand why teens drink alcohol.  There are many reasons why a young teen may choose to drink alcohol.  A national survey, taken in 1995, showed that 87 percent of parents thought that teens drank because of peer pressure, but 79 percent of teenagers said it was just because they liked the feeling they got when they drank (27).  The main reason and the biggest reason why teens drink would probably have to be peer pressure, but there are many other reasons other than peer pressure why a teen might drink.  
In addition to peer influences, some experts believe that media depiction of alcohol use in print advertising, television and radio commercials, and fictional television programs such as sitcoms and dramatic series glamorizes alcohol to young people and can influence their decision to drink (Mitchell 28).  The media today is very influential, and by viewing alcohol being glamorized some teens think that it is acceptable to drink.  Many teenagers are fascinated by some of the alcohol commercials on television such as the comedic Budweiser ads, and researchers believe that this fascination may lead them to try the product being advertised (30).
Peer pressure is a huge issue for a teenager these days and it affects many decisions a teen might make.  Being a teen can be an awkward situation, and in order to fit in and feel less awkward teens might start to drink, but what they dont know is that it may not be so easy to stop (Landau 52).  Some teens would do anything to be cool so if the cool teens told them drink, they might just be pressured into doing so as well (Nielsen 53).
Many times peer pressure and social situations seem to be similar in that they both can cause a teenager to do something they normally wouldnt do. The only difference is that with peer pressure he or she is forced to make a decision and with social situations, the teen makes the decision. A teens social environment can also lead him to start drinking.  For example, a teen might try drinking in order to loosen up or to be less shy, and if he thinks that he did loosen up he might want to do it again (Mitchell 25).  Many social situations such as a party or school function may present the opportunity to drink, and if teens see that everybody else is drinking they might do ... more

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Accidents

Aircraft Investigation
Each mishap has their own characteristics and there is no substitute for good old-fashioned common sense and initiative. Each wrecked aircraft has its own story to tell if properly investigated. However Air Force guidelines are quick to point out that investigators in their eagerness seek out the causes, often ignore safe investigation practices and common safety precautions. Air Force Investigators are maybe in even more difficult position due to the hazards that are unique to the military war fighting machines, Ill discuss a few of these hazards briefly before I get into the steps of Air Force accident investigations.
Munitions
Extreme care must be given to the munitions that may have been on board the aircraft. Just because the ammunition appears to be damaged beyond being dangerous the slightest amount of static electricity from clothing may detonate munitions. Before starting an investigation of any kind, obtain the list of munitions aboard and have the explosive ordinance disposal (EOD) team remove or inert them. Again eagerness must be controlled and situational awareness must be exercised to be on the lookout for those munitions that may not have been recovered. Also, though tedious, the locations of all munitions need to be noted, as they will hold clues as well. The ejection seats can also present extreme dangers to untrained and careless investigator.
Toxins
Hydrazine. Its a word that strikes fear in all that are familiar with it. New generation aircraft such as the F-16 use hydrazine for emergency power supplies. It looks like a clear oily substance that smells like ammonia. Some of the effects hydrazine can have on the human body include: liver damage, blindness, skin burns, and prolong exposure may be fatal. Only base bioenvironmental engineers are qualified enough to properly handle it.
Materials
Also somewhat unique but is gradually finding its way into the commercial side of aviation is the use of high composite materials along with exotic metals used in the effort to not only strengthen, but to lighten the overall weight of the airframe.
The composites used with most frequency today are boron, graphite and Kevlar. Each of these materials has their own characteristics and must be handled with care. While in its finished form Kevlar is very stable, boron and graphite must be handled with extreme care to avoid breathing in dust created when the structures become damaged. Boron fibers can pierce through skin and stay imbedded indefinitely and cannot be removed easily causing severe infections.
Funding Issues
The host base funds all in-house support (except billeting) even if the host base is not assigned to the convening authoritys MAJCOM. In-house support includes administrative support and equipment, work areas, reproduction, and graphics. The MAJCOM or ANG command that possesses the mishap aircraft is responsible for all costs associated with the crash site clean up and restoration. (USAF, 1998)
Steps
The following are a condensed version of the steps given to the accident board president to help guide them through the process of getting organized and to better use some the broad assets available to the military accident board president, the steps comprise parts of both AFI 51-503 and AFP 127-1.
1. Get organized before running to the smoking hole.
a. Find out what was done at the crash site.
b. Determine the support needed from the base that owns the aircraft. They will
be best informed of the nature of the airframe.
2. Get to know your board members so youll have an idea of their capabilities and how you can best use them.
a. If you know a sharp officer or NCO that you would like on the board, ask for
them.
b. Secure any voice recordings, videotapes and films pertinent to the mishap and be prepared to send copies when requested.
3. Working with the interim board members:
a. Secure evidence they captured. They might lose it when they go back to their jobs.
b. Have them provide a list of interim board members with their work/home phone numbers.
c. Request they discuss with their safety office any glitches they discovered in the unit mishap response plan.
d. Ensure a face-to-face hand-off takes place for a positive exchange of information and investigative authority.
e. Assess exactly what was accomplished, and what the interim board feels is the next step.
4. Technical assistance/airlift support:
a. Request it only ... more

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