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USS Theodore Roosevelt prepares to return to sea

200424-N-LH674-2064 APRA, Guam (April 24, 2020) U.S. Sailors fold the American flag after evening colors on the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) April 24, 2020. Upon arriving in Guam March 27, Theodore Roosevelt established an Emergency Command Center, initiated a roving and deep cleaning team, and continually educated the crew on social distancing and proper protective procedures and behaviors, to assist the crew in mitigating and controlling the spread of COVID. Theodore Roosevelt is in Guam for a scheduled port visit for resupply and crew rest during their scheduled deployment to the Indo-Pacific. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Kaylianna Genier/Released)
April 29, 2020

Hundreds of Sailors began the transition from quarantine and isolation to the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) April 29, as the ship prepares to return to sea after a bow-to-stern deep cleaning process.

More than 4,000 Sailors who tested negative for COVID-19 have been in quarantine in hotels off base. It will take several days to move all of these Sailors back onboard.

After the ship’s arrival to Guam on March 27, approximately 700 Sailors remained on board to maintain critical ongoing operations and begin the cleaning. Since then, the ship underwent an aggressive, multi-pronged cleaning regimen, which balanced effective decontamination with protecting the ship’s critical systems. Spaces were vacated for seven days – four days longer than the minimum recommended by the Centers for Disease Control – before being thoroughly disinfected. For spaces that were continuously operational, Sailors cleaned the area before leaving it, while the incoming Sailors cleaned it immediately upon arrival.

Meanwhile, Commander 7th Fleet, Joint Region Marianas, U.S. Naval Hospital Guam, Naval Base Guam and the government of Guam coordinated to isolate and quarantine the ship’s Sailors in phases, in accordance with recommended Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) standards.

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“Our mission is to make sure the fighting force in the fleet is ready to go at all times,” said Capt. Maria Young, commanding officer, U.S. Naval Hospital Guam. “I appreciated the Sailors’ patience throughout this whole process, as we worked with one another to maintain the health and readiness of the crew and to get the Roosevelt back to sea. We are happy to help.”

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This article was originally published by the US Navy.