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Norfolk Naval Shipyard begins enhanced screening procedures

The shipyard is military's first installation in region to do temperature checks daily on workers.

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Norfolk Naval Shipyard is implementing policies to increase screenings, hygiene, and face mask use for all 14,000 of its workers. 

The Navy's oldest shipyard is the first military installation in Hampton Roads, and the first of the nation's four public shipyards to conduct temperature checks at the gates.

They have also installed hand-washing stations around the facility.

Additionally, the shipyard has produced more than 23,000 cloth face masks, with an additional 1,200 made by teleworking personnel to support employees when they cannot maintain six feet of physical distance, or if they're on-board submarines.

Shipyard leaders are also encouraging workers to self-screen while at home and to clean and alternate face masks.

It's all about keeping the workers healthy during the pandemic.

"They're our number one priority. We can't do any of the work without them," said the shipyard's deputy commander, Captain Daniel Rossler. "We had a great test today of the traffic flow, and for the people down in the city of Portsmouth, there was no traffic delays at the gate."

For those working on-site, the shipyard will provide longer lunch breaks to allow more time for hand-washing and hygiene, increased shift options, and installed hand-washing stations in key areas inside the industrial area. 

For those teleworking, the shipyard procured additional IT equipment and enabled desktop computers to be transported home so employees can more effectively perform their duties.

Individuals on DoD property, installations, and facilities are required to wear cloth face coverings when they cannot maintain six feet of physical distance and onboard submarines. 

As of April 22, the workers in the shipyard's Sail Loft and Insulation Shop have made more than 23,000 cloth face masks, with an additional 1,200 made by teleworking personnel.

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