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COVID-19 has made its way into the Cairo Fire Department in recent days with five firefighters testing positive.
“The first case was confirmed on Aug. 22, and then the rest were confirmed yesterday (Aug. 24),” states Bill Schafer, chief of the Cairo Fire Department. “One shift had three firefighters test positive and two others on another shift. We have a minimum staffing of four, so we are able to meet that with other shift workers and we also have three administrative workers that will also do shift work until the others are able to return.”
Chief Schafer says all symptomatic firefighters have been tested, and there are six who tested negative.
“I have advised all firefighters if they have any symptom to notify me and please do not report to work,” he says.
In addition to spraying the entire fire station with TwinOxide before and after shift changes, firefighters are wearing masks when on calls, when riding in a fire engine and when they’re unable to maintain social distancing while at the station.
To further protect firefighters, the department is answering only emergency calls at this time. “We have shut down all non-emergency operations,” Chief Schafer says.