First responders in Raleigh County work with new protocols amid COVID-19 pandemic

COVID-19 Resources

BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) – During the COVID-19 pandemic, the countless efforts of first responders are not put on hold.

The Raleigh County 911 Center’s emergency management planner, Cody Fortner said, like many essential jobs, they’re performing their every day duties with different protocols and procedures.

“We’ve been participating in conference calls with the state and governor’s office, as well as three weekly calls on our local level as far as a situational update on what’s going on in our county,” Fortner said.

Those calls are to ensure the residents in Raleigh County are safe and updated as much as possible on any new COVID-19 information. Fortner said in the event of an emergency, 911 operators are implementing new questions to ask those calling in to the center.

“We ask that the public be patient with our telecommunications staff if they call 911 or need assistance. You are going to be asked some questions related to COVID. We just ask that you bare with us through that,” Fortner said.

Fortner said these questions are being asked with the intent to keep everyone healthy. He also asks the public to follow the stay-at-home order.

“If you don’t have to be out on the road. Try to stay home if you can. You can help limit the exposure to everyone,” Fortner said.

That limits exposure to those first responders at risk every day they work to save lives.

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