The firefighters called to Alaska’s first COVID-19 case were quarantined; Officials say that won’t happen again

  • Source: Alaska Public Media News
  • Published: 03/17/2020 12:00 AM

The quarantining of three firefighters who responded to Alaska’s first confirmed case of the coronavirus came out of caution, not because of a lapse, Anchorage’s fire chief said Monday. The firefighters, who responded to a 911 call about the case last week, took standard measures to protect against infectious disease, said Chief Jodie Hettrick. But at the time, federal and other guidance about the best measures to specifically protect against COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, was not entirely settled, Hettrick added. “Because no one across the state or the nation was 100% comfortable with where we were, we just wanted to be cautious and make sure that our people are taken care of — and we didn’t miss something and then expose everybody else,” Hettrick said in an interview Monday. “This will not happen in the future — we believe the science is settled for how to prevent it and prevent exposure from our people.”


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