ARIZONA NEWS

Phoenix Fire Dept. reusing protective equipment amid COVID-19 outbreak

Apr 6, 2020, 4:15 AM
phoenix firefighters masks...
(KTAR News Photo/Ali Vetnar)
(KTAR News Photo/Ali Vetnar)

PHOENIX – The national shortage of personal protective equipment has forced the largest fire department in Arizona to be resourceful regarding lifesaving equipment.

On Friday, the Phoenix Fire Department directed all personnel to wear gloves, masks and eye protection during all 911 calls and public interaction.

Before that, firefighters would save PPE only for COVID-19 calls in order to preserve supplies.

“We don’t know how long we can last through our shipments or when the next is coming,” Phoenix Fire Captain Rob McDade told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

“We have to be smart.”

The Phoenix Fire Department has taken steps to inform its members how they can protect themselves from COVID-19 while also recycling desperately needed N-95 masks and glasses.

“In an effort to make our PPE last, we are putting out internal videos, memos, everything we can to show our members how to properly reuse a mask or glasses,” McDade said.

That includes informing personnel when it is not safe to reuse PPE.

If there’s any indication that PPE has been damaged on a call, it will be thrown away.

But firefighters will reuse PPE worn during a low acuity call — such as a car accident in the open air or an incident where no one is symptomatic.

“These are unprecedented times for us and we have to adapt to what’s in front of us,” McDade added.

“We owe it to the citizens and our members to make this equipment last.”

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Irene Luevano, 37, was last seen at a bar near 27th Avenue and Camelback Road  in Phoenix with her ...
KTAR.com

Phoenix police find car of missing 37-year-old woman

Police said Tuesday they found the vehicle of a Phoenix woman who was reported missing by her family days ago.
7 hours ago
(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)...
Associated Press

Sanders says he may support Sinema challenger in Arizona primary

Sen. Bernie Sanders suggested Tuesday that he'd support primary challengers against Democratic colleagues Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin, further intensifying a political battle within the party.
7 hours ago
(File Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)...
KTAR.com

Maricopa community colleges get $17.1M from cannabis tax in first year of legality

Taxes from the sale of recreational cannabis during the first year of legality in Arizona resulted in millions of dollars for local community colleges, officials said Tuesday.
7 hours ago
Hualapai tribal dancers. (File Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)...
KTAR.com

2 Arizona tribes to receive $1.6M in latest round of US tribal housing grants

Two tribes in northern Arizona will receive $1.6 million in federal grants as part of COVID-19 relief efforts, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development announced Tuesday.
7 hours ago
(Facebook photo/Phoenix Zoo)...
KTAR.com

Phoenix Zoo to host extra night of ZooLights for adults on Thursday

Adults can go through the Phoenix Zoo's annual ZooLights holiday display one final time on Thursday before the experience is turned off until next winter. 
7 hours ago
(Petrified Forest National Park Photo)...
KTAR.com

Skull of extinct crocodile-like reptile to be on display at Arizona museum

People will soon be able to get a look at the skull of a crocodile-like reptile that lived in Arizona millions of years ago.
7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Canvas Annuity

Annuity basics: how to retire with a guaranteed paycheck for life

Does the thought of retirement fill you with stress or with happiness? Everyone wants to spend their retirement in a way that brings them the most joy, whether that’s traveling the world or spending extra time at home with grandkids.
...
Arizona State University

Gain insights on next year’s trends at 58th Annual Economic Forecast Luncheon

Employment is recovering from the severe contraction induced by the pandemic, but it is still way below levels at the start of 2020. Can it fully recover in the coming year?
...
DISC DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

What you need to know about spine health

With 540 million people suffering from lower back pain, it remains the leading cause of long-term disability. That’s why World Spine Day on Oct. 16 will raise awareness about spinal health with its theme, BACK2BACK. “BACK2BACK will focus on highlighting ways in which people can help their spines by staying mobile, avoiding physical inactivity, not overloading […]
Phoenix Fire Dept. reusing protective equipment amid COVID-19 outbreak