Compromise at the gates

Students, Warren AFB come to mutual understanding about driving on base

Last semester, Laramie County Community College students attending class at F.E. Warren Air Force Base complained they were routinely being pulled over while entering the front gate, which often made them late for class.

Students who attend classes on base experience a vastly different driving environment from the one on the LCCC main campus in Cheyenne. “The atmosphere on the base is more stringent, but it does not consist of profiling or harassment,” said LCCC Head of Campus Security James Crosby.      

LCCC and F.E. Warren have enjoyed a long community partnership for the benefit of the satellite campus, the students and base security. Because the base is an active duty military operation, “there is a different philosophy between base security and campus security,” Crosby, said. LCCC students are often not accustomed to base security. No formal complaints have been received by the LCCC outreach staff at Warren, but several access issues last semester have since been addressed to all base personnel, LCCC outreach staff, students and LCCC campus security, said Terry Cook, LCCC outreach program manager at Warren.

Every vehicle entering the base is subject to search, and unless a particular incident is noted, these are all random. Military personnel are familiar with being directed to an alternate lane and told to step out of the vehicle while it is searched by security; however, if a person has never experienced this before, it might be disconcerting. 

A routine traffic stop may result in multiple security vehicles responding, depending upon the time of year, the type of exercises or training going on, or the national security or threat levels.    

Warren program manager informs staff of different encounters

To ensure everyone was aware of the various exercises and the different types of encounters, Cook sent an email to all staff and students detailing why those would happen. Additionally, each semester Cook and one or two of his staff personally meet each student at the gate to ensure he has the proper credentials for a pass and is added to the entry access list for base access covering the entire semester. Because base stickers are no longer required for entry to Warren, the pass is not required to be displayed on the dashboard or any visible location or shown to anyone other than the gate guard upon entry to the base.

All vehicles are treated the same because a student’s car is not distinguishable from an F.E. Warren airman’s car.       

A minor traffic violation may garner “unwanted” attention. “Because of the low speed limits on base three or five miles over the limit is taken very seriously, and citations may be issued,” Cook said. This may involve the regular base police vehicle, a vehicle with staff in training and a supervisor’s vehicle. 

A student’s access to the base is part of the LCCC class registration process. If it’s done correctly, then everything else will go smoothly for base passes. Everything a student needs to know, to do and to bring is included. If there are minor issues with a driver’s license, the LCCC outreach staff can work through those problems if given enough lead time. 

Procedures for visitor passes are now current

Procedures for visitor passes for Warren Air Force Base, as noted on F.E. Warren webpage, are current as of Nov. 13.

Visitors requesting unescorted entry onto the base must be sponsored by an authorized individual, issued a pass or be listed on an approved entry authority list.

Passes are issued at the visitor control center (VCC), Building 426, outside the main gate, open daily from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. After these hours, passes will be issued at the main gate.

The entry authority list is disseminated to the base gates and the VCC. The list contains the person's full name, date of birth and an ID number for those 16 years old and older (i.e., driver’s license, passport number or state-issued ID). If anyone listed on the entry authority list will be driving on the installation, he must have a valid driver's license, insurance and registration.

Everyone entering the installation is positively identified which includes random ID checks. 

LCCC’s Crosby noted it is good practice to notify the LCCC program managers and his staffs at any satellite campus plus the LCCC main campus security office at 778-1340 to keep them informed of any issues occurring on base and also for record purposes.

The communications between all parties is ever present, open and ongoing for the safety and security of students aboard Warren as well as for the good order and discipline of military personnel and procedures, according to Cook.    

LCCC Safety and Security

James Crosby

F.E. Warren