The U.S. military said Friday it has increased the threat level at bases across North America, including right here in eastern North Carolina. Officials say the incremental boost will likely mean heightened vigilance and more random bag or vehicle checks.
The baseline level went from A to B, although most military installations – including the Pentagon – were already at a slightly higher level of protection than level A. There are four levels, A through D.
Army Col. Steve Warren says the increase was not triggered by a specific event. He says it was due to a generally heightened threat environment, which would include the recent terror threat and attempted attack surrounding a provocative cartoon contest in Texas.
Officials say Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune and Marine Corps Air Station New River are currently in Force Protection Condition Bravo in response to the directive.
FPCON Bravo applies when an increased or more predictable threat of terrorist activity exists. This FPCON is not tied to a specific threat, but USNORTHCOM set this condition to ensure random antiterrorism measures are conducted in unpredictable frequency and to ensure increased vigilance and safeguarding of all DOD personnel, installations and facilities
Base personnel are encouraged to be watchful of any suspicious activities and to report anything unusual to local authorities by calling the Eagle Eyes Hotline at 451-3333 or by dialing 911.
The alert level was approved by Adm. Bill Gortney, head of U.S. Northern Command.