Dover AFB declares public health emergency

Delaware News Desk
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times
Smyrna/Clayton Sun-Times

Dover Air Force Base commander Col. Matthew Jones declared an on-base public health emergency March 18.

“The safety of our Dover family is our top priority,” Jones said. “We are working in close coordination with local and state authorities to help mitigate the spread and effects of the coronavirus, while providing updates as quickly as possible.”

This declaration allows Jones to take necessary actions to protect airmen and families and limit the spread of the virus. This includes restricting movement of personnel and access to the base and implementing quarantine or isolation procedures for affected individuals.


North gate is closed, and all traffic must use the main gate. Anyone going to the 436th Medical Group must use the right most lane and go through a screening checkpoint before entering the base. If already on base, people must exit and re-enter through the main gate screening checkpoint.

Dover AFB has also raised their Health Protection Condition from Alpha to Bravo. Jones said this health protection condition is the most accurate description of the current outbreak and exposure risk for base personnel.

Base members and families are encouraged to practice prevention measures already in place, including following strict personal and environmental hygiene, social distancing, staying home if sick, self-quarantining if exposed, and contacting their healthcare provider if they develop any symptoms consistent with COVID-19, such as fever, coughing and shortness of breath.

As of March 13, all Department of Defense, military and civilian personnel on base were ordered to stop movement, including permanent change of station and temporary duty, until May 11.

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