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State fire marshal advises first responders to coronavirus prep, Cape Coral firefighters ready

The state’s chief financial officer is warning firefighters in the state to prepare to respond to coronavirus.

We got an inside look at what Cape Coral Fire Department is doing in response to the state’s advice Friday.

With the possible threat of coronavirus, shelves across Southwest Florida have been emptied of medical supplies including masks.

“Our logistics division has done an inventory of what we have,” CCFD Fire Chief Ryan Lamb said. “We feel comfortable, confident.”

CCFD is stocked full of supplies to respond to the virus, but firefighters and EMTs can’t fight coronavirus (COVID-19) alone.

“We briefed city staff about the potential impacts of it here,” Lamb said.

They’re counting on the community to do their part.

“They all need to make sure they’re washing their hands,” said Jimmy Patronis, CFO and Florida state fire marshal. “When you cough, make sure you’re coughing into an elbow.”

Patronis wants to make sure first responders across the state are getting the backup they need. Because, when the community can cut back on avoidable emergencies, first responders can focus on doing what they love the most.

Another way to help is by leaving face masks on the shelves when you find them. The CDC says they’re really only advised for people who are sick or for people caring for sick loved ones. And, if they have the tools they need to stay healthy, we all benefit.

“When somebody’s in trouble within the city, they know that, if they need help, they call the fire department. They call 911, and we’ll come and help them out.”

Vice president champions state and local government prep

While the threat of spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) remains low, Vice President Mike Pence calls this an “all hands on deck” effort.

And Pence said his job is to make sure our state and local governments have what it needs to keep everyone safe.

Gov. Ron DeSantis and Vice President Pence believe the travel restrictions issued last month helped limit the number of cases in the U.S. to 15, which is where it stands Friday.

Pence plans to meet with the coronavirus task force to discuss more changes to the travel status in the U.S.

Reporter:Veronica Marshall
Erika Jackson
Writer:Jack Lowenstein
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