SAN ANTONIO – A group of 10 Iowans are expected to depart JBSA Lackland Tuesday afternoon to continue their quarantine in their home state.
The evacuees, who arrived last week from the Grand Princess cruise ship, are expected to fly out at 4 p.m. to Iowa, where the state has agreed to assume quarantine responsibility, said a spokesperson for the U.S Department of Health and Human Services. After they leave, there will be 124 people remaining in quarantine on base. Additionally, four people who had been quarantined there but tested positive for COVID-19 have been moved off-base.
Other patients have already left to continue their quarantines in Kentucky, Indiana, Georgia, Utah, Florida, Oklahoma, Wisconsin, and Arizona, but dozens of non-Texans still remain on the base, despite plans to limit the Lackland quarantine to just Texans.
Evacuees from the Grand Princess cruise ship began arriving at JBSA Lackland on Mar. 10 for a 14-day quarantine, amid growing state and local concerns about the availability of resources for Texas residents.
The day after the first plane arrived, Mayor Ron Nirenberg said he had been told non-Texans would not stay on the base for more than 72 hours.
However, with the quarantine period roughly halfway done, only 73 people of the remaining evacuees are Texans, the HHS spokesman said. The others are from eight other states, he said, and “a small number” of people from the list of previously departures had chosen to remain at Lackland to finish their quarantine.
The second-largest remaining group of evacuees is from Ohio with 18 people, the spokesman said. He did not know which group would be returning home next.