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Fort Stewart, Parris Island, Beaufort evacuating ahead of Hurricane Dorian, now a deadly 145 mph, Category 4 monster

Hurricane Dorian, now a Category 4 storm with sustained winds of 145 mph, has stalled and continues to pound Grand Bahama Island.

Here’s what installations are telling personnel via social media:

Patrick Air Force Base, Florida

The 45th Space wing declared Hurricane Condition 2 on Sept. 1, indicating surface winds in excess of 50 knots (58 mph) could arrive in the area of Patrick Air Force Base and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station within 24 hours. Base officials ordered a limited evacuation order and closed the base to all non-essential personnel, appropriated and non-appropriated, at 10 a.m. Sept. 1.

Personnel are expected to stay in touch with their chain of command and to monitor social media.

Naval Station Mayport, Florida

The commander of U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet ordered ships homeported at Naval Station Mayport to sortie to areas of the Atlantic to avoid the storm. Aircraft will also be moved to avoid potential damage.

“When maintenance status prevents storm avoidance, we take extra precautions to best protect these units,” said Rear Adm. Don. Gabrielson, the commander of Naval Forces Southern Command.

USS Shamal (PC 13), USS Lassen (DDG 82), USS Paul Ignatius (DDG 117), USS Farragut (DDG 99), USS Billings (LCS 15), and USS Milwaukee (LCS 15) were expected to sortie.

Ships expected to shelter in place included USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), USS Roosevelt (DDG 80), USS Detroit (LCS 7), USS Little Rock (LCS 9), USS Hue City (CG 66), USS The Sullivans (DDG 68), USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116) and USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7).

In a video posted Aug. 30 to Mayport’s Faceboook page, commanding officer Capt. Jason Canfield said there was still uncertainty about the storm’s landfall and to prepare to ride out the storm either in place or elsewhere.

NAS Jacksonville, Florida

Due to the deteriorating weather forecast relating to Hurricane Dorian, NAS Jacksonville was closed to non-essential personnel beginning at 4 p.m., Sept. 2.

However, several facilities will remain open until 2 p.m. Sept. 3 for hurricane-relief items. These include:

  • Navy Exchange Gas Station Navy Exchange Main Store and Home Store, NAS Jax Commissary (water is available)
  • The Navy and Marine Corps Relief Society is providing $600 interest-free loans to military members and their families – just show your ID card.

All NAS Jax gates and the Visitor Control Center will remain open until 2 p.m. Sept. 3. At that time, only the Yorktown (main) gate will remain open. All deliveries determined essential to the station must be met by sponsors at the gate.

Only mission essential personnel will have access to the base on Tuesday, Sept. 3 after 2 p.m. and on Wednesday, Sept. 4. Tuesday and Wednesday will be considered days of administrative leave for all civilian personnel assigned to the station.

Aircraft were ordered to evacuate or secured in hangars on Aug. 29.

MacDill Air Force Base, Florida

On Sunday, base officials said personnel should report to work on Tuesday after favorable forecasts for the Tampa Bay area. When it looked like the storm would plow through Florida, the base evacuated it’s KC-135 Stratotanker aerial refueling jets to McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. Commanders and supervisors are encouraged to allow for liberal leave, and base services will be open on time. However, personnel were still encouraged to remain prepared.

Fort Stewart, Georgia

On Monday, Sept. 2, Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield leadership responded to the mandatory evacuation order in advance of Hurricane Dorian’s arrival.

“We are committed to the safety of our service members and their families,” said Lt. Col. Dave Escobar, Hunter Army Airfield garrison commander.

Hunter’s families who live on post are directed to evacuate and follow the guidance of local and state officials. If you live in a mandatory evacuation zone, you must follow the evacuation mandates made by local and state officials.

Single service members residing on Hunter are advised to evacuate to Fort Gordon. Hunter Army Airfield is providing buses to transport service members who do not wish to travel in their privately-owned vehicles. Soldiers on buses will receive lodging at Fort Gordon.

Evacuees will see increased traffic congestion on major roadways. Plan your evacuation accordingly.

Most of the aircraft assigned to Hunter’s units evacuated to other military installations inland today. The others will depart tomorrow. Some aircraft have been secured in hangars here.

Shaw Air Force Base, South Carolina

At 8 p.m. Monday, base officials declared HURCON 3, indicating they may see tropical storm winds within the next 48 hours. While the forecast doesn’t look too bad, base officials said, Hurricane Dorian’s track could always change overnight, so please continue to make adequate preparations.

All facilities will be operating under normal hours tomorrow. However, if you are scheduled to attend USAFCENT’s PERSCO pre-deployment brief on 4-5 Sept, it has been cancelled. SMSgt Misty Moreno will be in touch to reschedule.

There were no plans to evacuate personnel as of Tuesday morning, but the base will transition to only mission essential personnel on duty at noon on Wednesday, Sept. 4.

Joint Base Charleston, South Carolina

A limited evacuation order was issued, in conjunction with the South Carolina Governor’s evacuation order, by Col. Terrence Adams, 628th Air Base Wing and Joint Base Charleston commander.

Marine Corps Recruiting Depot Parris Island and Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort

Both of the Marine Corps’ coastal South Carolina installations, the Parris Island recruit depot and the Beaufort air station, have been ordered to evacuate as Hurricane Dorian moves towards the East Coast, according to military officials.

At Parris Island, the mandatory evacuation was in place starting 5 p.m. Sept. 2 and will remain in effect until it is rescinded.

Col. Timothy P. Miller, the Beaufort air station base commander, ordered the mandatory evacuation of non-essential DoD personnel aboard the air station effective 12:00 p.m. Monday, according to a command release.

Langley Air Force Base and Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — The U.S. military is taking precautions as Hurricane Dorian threatens ships and planes based on Virginia's coast.

U.S. Air Force Col. David Lopez said in a statement Tuesday that F-22 Raptor fighter jets and T-38 Talon training planes will leave Langley Air Force Base in Hampton. The planes will fly to the Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base outside Columbus, Ohio.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Navy is ordering ships on Virginia's coast to prepare to leave if necessary.

Vice Adm. Andrew Lewis said in a statement that ships at the world's largest Navy base in Norfolk and other nearby installations will be ready to depart within 24 hours.

By heading out to sea, the ships will better protect themselves and reduce significant potential damage to piers, airplanes and other pieces of infrastructure.

Reporter Shawn Snow contributed to this report.

This GOES-16 satellite image taken at 1 p.m. (EDT) Sunday and provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows Hurricane Dorian churning over the Atlantic Ocean. (NOAA via AP)
This GOES-16 satellite image taken at 1 p.m. (EDT) Sunday and provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration shows Hurricane Dorian churning over the Atlantic Ocean. (NOAA via AP)
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