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Medical-grade masks, like this FFP2 version, must be worn in public facilities on U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz installations starting Monday, garrison officials said.
Medical-grade masks, like this FFP2 version, must be worn in public facilities on U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz installations starting Monday, garrison officials said. (MICHAEL ABRAMS/STARS AND STRIPES)

KAISERSLAUTERN, Germany — Medical-grade masks must be worn in public facilities on U.S. Army Garrison Rheinland-Pfalz installations starting Monday, garrison officials said.

FFP2, KN95, N95 or surgical masks will be required when visiting or waiting outside of “all retail establishments, Post Offices, all (exchange and commissary) facilities, legal assistance offices, banks or any location providing goods or services to personnel on all Army USAG-RP installations,” garrison commander Col. Vance Klosinski said in a memorandum Friday.

The rule applies to military personnel, family members, and Defense Department civilians and contractors, “unless mission requirements dictate otherwise,” the memorandum said.

Medical-grade masks also will be required when participating in religious services on the garrison.

Cloth masks with at least two layers of fabric may be used in other facilities, the memorandum said. Masks must cover the mouth and nose.

Children age 6 and under do not have to wear a face covering in public.

The Army’s announcement comes a day after the 86th Airlift Wing said medical-grade masks would be required on public facilities on Ramstein Air Base and other Air Force installations in the Kaiserslautern area starting next week.

The new rules bring all U.S. installations in the Kaiserslautern area and Baumholder in line with measures imposed by the state of Rheinland-Pfalz, which require medical-grade masks to be worn in shops and while using public transit.

Germany toughened its mask rules to bring down persistently high coronavirus infection rated and to help contain the spread of new, more transmissible variants of the virus.

news@stripes.com

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