Navy installations in Hampton Roads ease COVID-19 restrictions


FILE – This June 21, 2013, file photo, shows the seal affixed to the front of the Department of Veterans Affairs building in Washington. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak, File)

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — The U.S. Navy is loosening some COVID-19 restrictions for those working and living in Hampton Roads.

Military personnel can now leave their homes for non-essential tasks under Health Protection Condition Level Bravo.

The area’s Navy installations have been under HPCON Charlie, which is more restrictive, since November.

Servicemembers still need to follow city and state guidance and precautionary measures, as well as follow CDC guidance for mask-wearing and physical distancing.

Military personnel must still “exercise sound judgement, maintain strict adherence to established health protection measures and take personal responsibility to ensure the health and safety of themselves and those around them,” the Navy Region Mid-Atlantic Public Affairs Office wrote in a news release Saturday.

The Navy says if COVID-19 cases worsen, it can change restrictions back to tighter levels if needed.

The Navy said health statistics have shown a downward trajectory of COVID-19 cases and influenza-like illnesses for more than 14 days.

“We’re pleased that we’ve made significant progress in our fight against the coronavirus,” said Rear Adm. Charles Rock, commander of Navy Region Mid-Atlantic. “Sailors and DOD civilians are all doing their part by voluntarily getting vaccinated. It’s now easier than ever to get a vaccine, and the faster that people get vaccinated the faster we’ll be able to finally sink COVID-19 once and for all.”

Military personnel are still required to follow the guidance of their commanding officers, as well at guidance from the region or installation commanders.

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