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National Fire News

Warehouse Fire Devastates San Francisco’s Fishing Industry

A huge fire that tore through a warehouse on San Francisco’s Fisherman’s Wharf has destroyed fishing gear used to deliver about two-thirds of the city’s fresh seafood, threatening to disrupt the upcoming Dungeness crab season, local fishermen said Sunday. The fire erupted before dawn Saturday and wiped out the warehouse the size of a football field near the end of Pier 45.
- PUB DATE: 5/26/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: KNTV NBC 11 San Jose

Pandemic Could Boost Case for Iowa First Responders' 'Essential' Status

As the coronavirus pandemic continues to unfold, Iowa's first responders say the state should no longer hold off on declaring Emergency Medical Services an essential service. That status is something EMS workers in Iowa have sought long before COVID-19. Being declared "essential" would require ambulance service across the state, instead of relying on a patchwork of volunteers, agencies and providers.
- PUB DATE: 5/26/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Public News Service

Fire truck adorned with flag tips over in Pennsylvania

VIDEO: A fire truck, adorned with a large American flag, tipped over shortly before 11:30 a.m. Monday in Plumstead Township, Bucks County. The view from Chopper 6 showed the truck on its side in a parking lot. The extended ladder was on the ground, stretched across the roadway in the area 4040 Ferry Road.
- PUB DATE: 5/26/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WPVI-TV ABC 6 Philadelphia

There is 'little evidence' coronavirus is under control in most states, report says

The spread of the novel coronavirus has not slowed in 24 states, according to a new model by Imperial College London that forecasts infection spikes as more people travel and leave their homes in the coming weeks. Why it matters: Nearly every state across the U.S. has taken steps to reopen their economies partially or completely, including some regions and industries that are deemed "low-risk" for spreading the virus, per a New York Times analysis.
- PUB DATE: 5/26/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: AXIOS

A Poignant EMS Week Amid a Historic Pandemic

National EMS Week is an annual event throughout the United States which celebrates and recognizes the hard work that all EMS providers do on a daily basis – from emergency medical technicians (EMTs) up to paramedics. These EMS providers can be paid, volunteer or a both (but at different agencies). No matter what the level, just remember that this person made a conscious decision to help someone in need, even while putting themselves (and/or their loved ones) at increased risk.
- PUB DATE: 5/22/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Journal of Emergency Medical Services

Pennsylvania EMT dies after battle with COVID-19, weeks after virus takes brother

Jeremy Emerich, a critical care EMT on the ground for Lehigh Valley Health Network’s MedEvac, died Thursday following a battle with COVID-19, friends and coworkers said on social media. Emerich was also a U.S. Armed Forces veteran and an active firefighter in Fleetwood, the Berks County community where he lived with his companion, Shana Konek.
- PUB DATE: 5/22/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: LehighValleyLive.com

Virus Crisis Exposes Cascading Weaknesses in US Disaster Response

For decades, the backbone of the nation’s disaster response system — and a hallmark of American generosity — has been its army of volunteers who race toward danger to help shelter, feed and counsel victims of hurricanes, wildfires and other calamities. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed a critical weakness in this system: Most volunteers are older people at higher risk from the virus, so this year they can’t participate in person.
- PUB DATE: 5/22/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: The New York Times

Texas fire department to test for COVID-19, train other departments as part of state Strike Force reopening effort

The McKinney Fire Department will be at Belterra Health and Rehab on Friday morning, testing 200 residents and staff members for the novel coronavirus in an effort to curb its spread. This is the first testing related to Governor Greg Abbot’s Strike Force Plan to Open Texas, according to the department.
- PUB DATE: 5/22/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: The Dallas Morning News

CDC estimates that 35% of coronavirus patients don't have symptoms

In new guidance for mathematical modelers and public health officials, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is estimating that about a third of coronavirus infections are asymptomatic. The CDC also says its "best estimate" is that 0.4% of people who show symptoms and have COVID-19 will die, and the agency estimates that 40% of coronavirus transmission is occurring before people feel sick.
- PUB DATE: 5/22/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: CNN

California sheriff backs bill outlawing dead-body photos by first responders in wake of Kobe Bryant incident

Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said Wednesday, May 20, that he backs a bill moving its way through the Assembly that would make it a crime for first responders in California to take photos of dead bodies at emergency sites unless for an investigation. Assembly Bill 2655 would make it a misdemeanor for police officers, sheriff’s deputies, firefighters, paramedics and other emergency personnel responding to disasters to take such photos.
- PUB DATE: 5/21/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Six homes destroyed in Texas apartment fire

VIDEO: Six homes were destroyed early Thursday morning in a roaring apartment fire in Tomball. The fire started around 4 a.m. at the Cobble Creek Apartments on Lawrence Street near Medical Complex Drive. Tomball police officers helped neighbors evacuate the building as flames tore through the roof, firefighters said.
- PUB DATE: 5/21/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: The Courier

Ohio firefighters set to volunteer for antibody testing to help in fight against COVID-19

The fear is still there, but some first responders have somewhat mastered coping with that fear of COVID-19. “You push it back so that you can maintain your mission,” Parma firefighter and department spokesperson T.J. Martin said. But the fear of unknowingly carrying the virus is hard to ignore. Martin says no one on his team has tested positive, but it would be comforting to know for sure.
- PUB DATE: 5/21/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WEWS-TV ABC 5 Cleveland

Dozens of Ambulances Drive in Convoy to Fenway Park to Honor Massachusetts EMS Workers

VIDEO: The more than 20,000 paramedics, EMTs and 911 dispatchers in Massachusetts were honored Wednesday as part of National EMS Week as a large convoy of ambulances traveled from Worcester to Boston. The "Convoy of Champions" set off from UMass Memorial Medical Center about 1:15 p.m. and made the 40-mile drive in about an hour, with a state police escort and a UMass Medical Life Flight helicopter.
- PUB DATE: 5/21/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WBTS-TV NBC 10 Boston

Traumatic Stress from COVID-19 Raises Concerns for Front-Line Responders

As the world continues to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic, a lot of focus has been on the health risks to healthcare workers due to the infectiousness of the virus and the insufficient amount of personal protective equipment (PPE) available. However, another health risk to these providers that is just starting to get attention are the physical and mental health effects from their constant exposure to the trauma of this disaster.
- PUB DATE: 5/21/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: In Public Safety

Tracking The Pandemic: How Quickly Is The Coronavirus Spreading State By State?

Since the first coronavirus case was confirmed in the United States on Jan. 21, over one million people in the U.S. have confirmed cases of COVID-19. On April 12, the U.S. became the nation with the most deaths globally, but there are early signs that the U.S. case and death counts may be leveling off, as the growth of new cases and deaths plateaus.
- PUB DATE: 5/20/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: National Public Radio

Memphis Fire Dept. spent more than $2 million to protect first responders during the pandemic, records show

The Memphis Fire Department spent more than $2 million on items related to COVID-19 during a two-month period to protect first responders during the pandemic. FOX13 investigated to find out how it is possible to spend that much tax money in such a short time. In just one week, Memphis Fire spent more than $240,000 on its coronavirus response.
- PUB DATE: 5/20/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: WHBQ-TV FOX 13 Memphis

Despite high volume community COVID-19 cases, Colorado first responders have kept themselves uncommonly healthy

Greeley’s unfortunate status as the center of one of the state’s larger COVID-19 outbreaks has led to a high volume of pandemic-related work for the city’s first responders. However, in spite of the potential for exposure, Greeley Fire Department, Police Department and Emergency Medical Services personnel have managed to largely avoid significant spread of the virus within their ranks.
- PUB DATE: 5/20/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Greeley Tribune

To Stem COVID, This Small Indiana City Decided To Test All Public-Facing Employees

Behind a nondescript strip mall in Carmel, Indiana, a short line of cars gathers mid-afternoon next to a large tent. Medical professionals stand out front, dressed head to toe in blue medical coveralls. People in the cars — many of them first responders — drive up to be tested for COVID-19. The test involves a really long swab placed deep into the nose, toward the back of the throat.
- PUB DATE: 5/20/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Kaiser Health News

NFFF Honors our Nation’s Fallen Heroes: 50 First Responders Succumb to COVID-19

On March 13, 2020, President Trump declared the novel coronavirus, COVID-19, outbreak a National Emergency. Since then, life has inarguably and most drastically changed for all of us. Global travel restrictions grounded all international travel. State-regulated stay-at-home orders suspended non-essential in-person business operations.
- PUB DATE: 5/19/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Chillicothe News

EMS Workers Are Integral to the Fight Against Coronavirus; Just a Few Decades Ago, America's EMS System Didn't Even Exist

EMS Week, which takes place in 2020 from May 17-23, is an annual time to recognize the life-saving efforts of emergency medical services personnel. While celebratory events won’t take place in person this year, EMS personnel are getting more recognition than usual: even before EMS week, virtually and during daily cheers for healthcare workers, they are widely hailed as heroes on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- PUB DATE: 5/19/2020 12:00:00 AM - SOURCE: Time Magazine