LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Generals say they'll punish unvaccinated soldiers recently caught not wearing a mask inside facilities on Fort Knox.

They're expected to issue about 40 reprimands to soldiers caught by senior leaders.

The U.S. Army says the letters are potentially career-crippling punishments.

“We have plenty of soldiers who aren’t vaccinated that are following the [Defense Department] and installation mask mandates and have no problems,” Fort Knox spokesman Kyle Hodges told Stars and Stripes. “For those who won’t follow the rules … we’re just enforcing those rules.”

Officials say the soldiers were caught in a matter of hours last week during random inspections at places like the Post Exchange.

Fort Knox says it's just trying to keep its 12,000 soldiers and thousands more civilian workers safe.

According to Stars and Stripes, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin last week reported 70% of active-duty service members had received at least one coronavirus vaccination dose and 62% of the active-duty force had been fully vaccinated.

Copyright 2021 by WDRB Media. All rights reserved.