Sailors and Marines allowed back in bars on Guam, but airmen remain restricted

Video: US Navy personnel were involved in a brawl outside a nightclub in Tumon, Guam in the beginning of March.

An order prohibiting sailors, Marines and Coast Guard personnel from visiting bars and eating inside restaurants to prevent spread of the coronavirus in Guam was lifted Tuesday.

The restriction had been ordered by Rear Adm. John Menoni, commander of Joint Region Marianas, the entity that administers the territory’s military installations.

In a memo Tuesday, Menoni said that although Guam was still in a public health emergency due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the situation had improved enough to lift the ban.

“Through successful exercise of personal responsibility and careful compliance with social distancing, hygiene, and face mask requirements, we have mitigated the threats posed by a spike in positive [coronavirus] cases beginning earlier this month,” he said.

Remaining in place is a June 18 order from Andersen Air Force Base restricting movement for service members who are permanently or temporarily assigned to that installation.

It requires those personnel to limit travel to essential trips, such as for grocery shopping or commuting to work. Service members violating the order will be subject to action under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

Guam has had 259 confirmed cases of coronavirus as of Tuesday, with 44 of those infections being military service members, according to Guam government statistics. Five people have died from the disease.

Contributing to the June spike in infections were 35 airmen from a single unit who tested positive after arriving on the island on May 25. The first airman tested positive June 12.

Guam’s Department of Public Health and Social Services identified and published a list of restaurants and shops the infected airmen were known to have visited June 4-13, asking individuals to consider being tested if they had significant contact with any of the airmen.

The aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt was sidelined in Guam on March 27 for almost two months as it dealt with a coronavirus outbreak that infected more than 1,150 sailors and killing one.


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