- The Washington Times
Sunday, March 22, 2020

The commander who oversees Army bases in the Washington area has raised the threat level for the coronavirus because of a “sustained possibility of community transmissions.”

U.S. Army Military District of Washington commander Maj. Gen. Omar Jones IV Saturday night put in effect Health Protection (HPCON) “Charlie,” up form a “Bravo” classification meaning only moderate disease threat.

The order affects personnel at Fort Belvoir, Va., Fort Myer-Henderson Hall adjacent to Arlington National Cemetery and Fort George G. Meade, Md,. home to the National Security Agency.

Gen. Jones also declared a “public health emergency” at Fort Belvoir and Fort Meade. He said the move gives him broader authorities to protect service members and their families..

The order comes as virus infections are rising in Maryland, D.C. and Virginia.

“Ensuring the health and safety of our Soldiers, Families and civilians is one of my greatest responsibilities,” said Gen. Jones. “We will continue to work with individual installations to make certain each post has capabilities to protect our people and mitigate the spread of the virus.”

His order means, among other restrictions, that there will be “Further cancellation of in-person gatherings ––all commercial activities such as commissaries, exchange services must keep a distance of six feet between customers.”

The Army also said to, “Prepare for the potential of limited access to supplies and services, including restricted access to military installations.”

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