Face masks required: Base police checking drivers, passengers at Academy gates

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U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. -- The top law enforcement official at the Air Force Academy asks everyone coming to base to show up with a face mask.

Col. Marcus Corbett’s requests reflect an order given by Lt. Gen. Jay Silveria, the school’s superintendent, directing everyone on base to wear a cloth face mask or covering. As commander of the 10th Security Forces Squadron -- the base’s police unit -- its Corbett’s duty to enforce that order.

“If they don’t have a mask, our security forces Airmen will ask them to get one before they’re allowed on base,” he said. “We invite Defense Department identification-card holders and beneficiaries on to base, but we want them to be safe and our Academy community to be safe.” 

Everyone entering the base at the North and South gates will be checked as wearing face masks is one of many safety precautions the Academy had taken as it contends with the global COVID-19 pandemic.

Nearly 100,000 people in the U.S. have died this year since the start of coronavirus pandemic.

Gov. Jared Polis extended Colorado’s safer-at-home order to June 1.

“As Lt. Gen. Silveria had said, this is our ‘new normal,’ and I expect we’ll be wearing masks and taking other precautions for a while,” Corbett said. “At the end of the day, everything we’re doing is designed to promote the safety and health of our community as we all adjust to living and working within the constraints of the coronavirus.”