GREENBRIER COUNTY, WV (WVNS) — Police officers, fire and rescue and EMS workers are in a unique position during the pandemic.
Those who work on the front lines said even though they strictly follow all of the safety guidelines, a large part of their jobs require them to be within six feet of those who’s life they may be trying to save.
“We have known from the beginning that our first line medical workers as well as our first line public safety personnel were going to have a greater risk of being exposed to this pandemic,” said Mike Honaker, Director of Homeland Security and Emergency Management in Greenbrier County.
Honaker said right now they are working with the local health department to have first responders tested as frequent as possible. And in the very near future, Honaker said they will be able to test and get results much faster.
“We will be able to collect a saliva sample very carefully from our employees, seal that and send it to the lab,” said Honaker.
Honaker said normally Thanksgiving is the most travelled period of the year, requiring more law enforcement on the highway.
The travel guidelines in place may decrease the amount of cars on the road, however, Honaker said the holiday season will still be a busy time for those on the front lines.
“One way or the other police fire and rescue and our 911 center is going to be just as busy during this thanksgiving period as they have in the past, maybe more busy,” said Honaker.
Honaker said he wants people to know those who work in any area of emergency management services are doing everything they can to stay healthy so they can continue to serve the community.
“They can’t afford to take chances with this and allow even one person to come to work and possibly pass that virus to their work force,” said Honaker.