As the clock ticks for the last of 2009, people gather to celebrate the end of the year. Intoxicated people tend to drive drunk, despite the tragedies that could occur.

The military not only tries to bring peace, but also tries to bring safety to the roads. Education is the main key to gradually end drunken driving crashes.

The Save a Life Tour in Europe, funded by the stateside Army Center for Substance Abuse Programs, is an excellent way to inform teens to not drive drunk ("Scared into straight, sober driving," article, Nov. 9, Europe edition).

I thank the military for this program. People need to become more aware of the danger of driving intoxicated.

Most high schools in the United States have the "Every 15 Minutes" program, which educates teens to stay sober when driving. This program originated in Canada but spread to the U.S.

I am 34 and involved with this program in my town. I state to local juniors and seniors how a drunken driver hit me when I was 16 and how it severely changed my life. The California Highway Patrol, firefighters, paramedics, lawyers and victims talk, along with a mock car crash, and basically scare teens away from driving drunk.

At Ramstein High School in Germany, teenagers viewed a multimillion-dollar drinking and driving simulator that made clear to them the dangers of driving drunk. This fear does not leave with time. People need to see such disasters to prevent them from becoming reality.

Have a safe and happy new year!

Lori A. MartinTracy, Calif.

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