COVID-19 outbreak hits Albemarle Fireplace Division, three firefighters hospitalized

ALBEMARLE, N.C. (WBTV) – A North Carolina hearth division has been overcome by a COVID-19 outbreak.

Fireplace officers with the Albemarle Fireplace Division say three of its firefighters are within the hospital due to the virus.

A complete of ten firefighters inside the division have examined constructive since July ninth.

One has been medically cleared and returned to work, whereas 5 extra must be cleared to return this week, in line with the division.

Fireplace and metropolis officers held a press convention Wednesday afternoon.

Fireplace Chief Pierre Brewton mentioned all shift personnel, apart from battalion chiefs, are staying house on what they’re calling a vital care break.

Firefighters from Harmony and Kannapolis are stepping in to assist serve the Albemarle group.

“They’re smaller and logistically they’ll’t deal with having 10 folks out with an outbreak,” Brian Taylor, State Fireplace Marshal, mentioned.

Out of simply 39 firefighters, 10 examined constructive for covid-19 and three are within the hospital.

“At the moment all Albemarle Fireplace Division employees are receiving a break for his or her psychological, bodily and emotional effectively being,” Albemarle Metropolis Supervisor Michael Ferris mentioned.

We requested Fireplace Chief Pierre Brewton whether or not any of the firefighters testing constructive are vaccinated, however he mentioned he can not reply that.

“What I can let you know is the town of Albemarle doesn’t have a vaccine or vaccination coverage,” Chief Brewton mentioned. “What we do is definitely comply with the steering given regionally, state and federal.”

Stanly County has one of many lowest vaccination charges within the state, with simply 32% absolutely and 34% partially vaccinated.

Chief Brewton says they’re taking steps to maintain firefighters and the group protected by sanitizing all tools and requiring pre-screening.

“Earlier than anybody begins a day by day shift at that time we are going to conduct baseline testing and that’s temperature checks and asking pertinent questions,” he mentioned.

Stanly County Commissioner Peter Asciutto attended the press convention.

He mentioned metropolis officers missed a chance to unfold an vital message to the Albemarle group.

“After they had the possibility to say what the group might do, all they beneficial was ideas and prayers, when CDC pointers, which they stored speaking about, advocate to get vaccinated, and in the event you’re not vaccinated to put on a masks, wash your arms and socially distance,” Ascuitto mentioned.

Stanly County Well being Director David Jenkins advised WBTV contact tracing may be robust as a result of not everybody they name is prepared to reply their questions.

Jenkins says about 150 folks come into the well being division for a shot every week, however with the Delta variant spreading, he wish to see that quantity go up.

Copyright 2021 WBTV. All rights reserved.

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