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NEWS | April 15, 2021

Centralized Parking Plans: Not Just a Force Protection Measure

By Jason Scarborough, Norfolk Naval Shipyard Public Affairs Norfolk Naval Shipyard

Force Protection Conditions (FPCONs) describe security measures that are implemented at Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) and other military installations in response to various levels of terrorist threats.  Military Commanders adjust FPCONs as necessary to respond to the local threat environment. 

Sometimes the FPCON status is raised or lowered to exercise the more stringent measures briefly, or to train the workforce and establish capabilities.

One measure, centralized parking, may be implemented in response to a threat during higher FPCONs.  However, centralized parking should not be looked at as just something done in response to a terrorist threat, but rather as an overall workforce protective measure.  Physical Security Specialist and Installation Antiterrorism Officer Erik Wagner stated, “The Centralized Parking Plan (CPP) is for all-hazard threat situations.  Meaning, the CPP can be implemented during dangerous winter weather, hurricanes, terrorist activities and/or criminal activities, or any hazard that would require the installation to reduce traffic flow.”

There are three phases in the CPP.  Phase 1 requires all personally owned vehicles (POVs) be moved outside the perimeter of the installation and only first responders be permitted to drive on base.  Phase 2 allows mission-essential personnel who directly support NNSY’s mission to enter the installation and park in designated cordoned off areas.  Phase 3 reopens dedicated portions of base parking to more of the workforce during a continued threat at the installation.  A major objective of the CPP is to eliminate vehicles parking near buildings, Mission Essential Vulnerable Areas, critical assets, primary gathering locations or any place where portions of the workforce may congregate. 

“Centralized parking improves an installation’s security posture.  More importantly it ensures the safety of our workforce,” said Wagner. “It can help to clear roadways during poor weather conditions, cut down on workforce traffic throughout the installation during emergency situations and it can alert security forces on who may be a good or a bad guy in the event of criminal or terrorist activities.”

The FPCON measures apply to all personnel. Each tenant command is required to align with NNSY’s security strategies and have a specific emergency action plan in place should higher FPCONs and the CPP be implemented.