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Department of Defense's Preparation, Support, and Recovery Efforts for Hurricane Matthew

The Department of Defense continues to monitor Hurricane Matthew closely in order to assess impacts on installations and personnel and to be prepared to provide assistance if needed.


As Hurricane Matthews continues, a daily update with the most relevant changes will be provided.


The latest major updates to the Department of Defense hurricane response activities as of Oct. 8 are:



Hunter Army Airfield - mandatory evacuation.


Fort Stewart  -  all non-mission essential personnel were released.


Fort Gordon - standing by to shelter Fort Stewart personnel if requested.


Army Support to Joint Task Force (JTF) Matthew

4 UH-60s, 3 CH-47s

46 Army Aviation personnel

10 Medical personnel


Point of contact for additional information about the Army: 

Office of the Chief of Public Affairs duty officer 703-220-9044.



All coastal bases in the Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina areas are in mission essential personnel status beginning Oct. 6. Evacuation orders were given for coastal regions within 200 miles.


USS Iwo Jima departed Naval Station Norfolk on Oct. 8 to relieve USS Mesa Verde in support of SOUTHCOM with humanitarian efforts in Haiti. Iwo Jima is expected to arrive Oct 13. Mesa Verde will be returning to Norfolk.


USS Mesa Verde received orders on Oct. 7 to support SOUTHCOM with humanitarian efforts in Haiti. The ship is expected to arrive Oct. 9.


USNS Comfort departed NS Norfolk on Oct. 4 with 280 medical personnel in an area clear of the hurricane in the event they are tasked to provide support.


Point of contact for additional information about the Navy: 

Navy Chief of Information duty officer 703-850-1047



Aircraft/Personnel Relocations

Robins Air Force Base, Georgia relocated four E-8C aircraft to Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma.


Moody Air Force Base, Georgia has declared ‘all clear’ and scheduled the return of three HC-130 aircraft from Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi  later today.


Base Closures

At Patrick Air Force Base, Florida, the airfield is open for operations, while Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida remains closed.


Response Operations

Over the last three days, 86 members from the 621st Contingency Response Wing based at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey consisting of command and control, airfield assessment, aerial port, aircraft maintenance, contracting, and security forces deployed to Port Au Prince, Haiti.


U.S. Air Forces Southern Command, headquartered at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona is deploying approximately 10 airmen to Port Au Prince, Haiti, to provide logistics and air traffic control capabilities in support of relief operations.


The Hurricane Hunters from the Air Force Reserve's 403rd Wing, based at Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi have flown three missions into Hurricane Matthew in support of the National Hurricane Center to help improve forecasting.


The 943rd Rescue Group at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base, Arizona has staged two HH-60 helicopters at Keesler Air Force Base, Mississippi to support relief activities.


Twelve Air Force Combat Camera airmen are documenting Hurricane Matthew relief operations in several locations, to include Haiti, Honduras, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, New Jersey, Dyess Air Force Base, Texas, and Fort Campbell, Kentucky.


One hundred fifty members from the 94th Airlift Wing supported FEMA staging efforts for Urban Search and Rescue teams at Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia.


Point of contact for additional information about the Air Force:

weekends and after duty-hours, call the public affairs duty officer at 202-386-4003

During duty hours, call the Air Force press desk at 703-695-0640.




Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island - Non-essential military personnel, non-essential civilian employees, and their family residing in the local area were given authorization to evacuate.


Approximately 6,000 recruits in training evacuated from Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island to Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany.


Camp Lejeune will maintain Tropical Cyclone Condition IV over the weekend.


Marine Corps Aviation Station Beaufort - 299 marines, sailors, and civilians sheltered in place. One hundred percent of military and civilian personnel that evacuated are accounted for.


Marine Corps Logistic Base Albany - continuing to assist FEMA as necessary to support hurricane relief efforts. 


Point of contact for additional information about the Marines: 

Contact U.S. Marine Corps Public Affairs,




More than 9,000 National Guard men and women from Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina  Alabama, Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, and Tennessee are aiding their communities and conducting search and rescue, security, infrastructure assessment, route clearance, and communications assistance in support of hurricane recovery efforts. 


The National Guard trains year-round to ensure they are ready to protect and assist citizens during disasters and emergencies.


Point of contact for additional information about the National Guard:

National Guard Bureau                                               703-627-7273

Florida National Guard Public Affairs                       904-823-0164

Georgia National Guard Public Affairs                      678-569-3957 

South Carolina National Guard Public Affairs           803-299-4327                         

North Carolina National Guard Public Affairs           984-664-6244 





NORTHCOM continues to coordinate with SOUTHCOM, FEMA, the services, the State Department, the senior defense official in the Bahamas, and east coast states, in Hurricane Matthew response. 


As of Oct. 8, NORTHCOM has approved five mission assignments for ISB/FSAs (Incident Support Bases and Federal Staging Areas). 


They are:  Dobbins Air Reserve Base, Georgia; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Marine Corps Logistics Base (MCLB) Albany, Georgia; North Aux Air Field, South Carolina; and Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia. NORTHCOM is also in receipt of a mission assignment to support search and rescue efforts in Florida. 


Additionally, defense coordinating officers and defense coordinating elements have been sent to Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia.  Dual-status commanders have been designated in Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina. 


Point of contact for additional information about NORTHCOM: 

public affairs main line 719-554-6889           




As of Oct. 8, approximately 250 Joint Task Force (JTF) Matthew personnel are on the ground in Haiti.  The JTF will continue supporting USAID-led assistance to ongoing international relief efforts in Haiti.


On Oct. 7, JTF-Matthew conducted missions in Les Cayes and Jeremie.


- In Les Cayes, task force helicopters and crews delivered 4,480 lbs. of food and a generator.


- In Jeremie, they delivered life-support supplies, including hygiene products and buckets.


The task force also continues to support ongoing USAID assessments of the damage and needs in the regions devastated by the storm.


From Naval Air Station Pensacola, a U.S. Navy P-8A Poseidon will continue to conduct aerial assessments of areas devastated by the storm to support disaster assessment experts on the ground in Haiti.


Point of contact for additional information about SOUTHCOM: 

U.S Southern Command Public Affairs Office 786-239-1996

Distribution channels: Military