[Brief] Fourth Benicia firefighter tests positive for COVID-19

JohnGlidden.com staff report | Nov. 8, 2020

BENICIA – A Benicia firefighter has tested positive for COVID-19, according to a city of Benicia press release. The infection is the fourth for the Benicia Fire Department, and the seventh city employee overall to be infected with Novel Coronavirus.

The firefighter was last on duty Nov. 4 and did not exhibit any symptoms until after completing their shift. The source of the infections has not been confirmed yet, officials said.

“We believe that members of our fire department will continue to experience these positive diagnoses, just as our community members do, until there is a vaccine,” said Fire Chief Josh Chadwick in the same news release. “Recognizing that, our firefighters wear N95 masks while responding to calls with our citizens, and wear face covering masks at all other times while out in the public. The Benicia Fire Department has standing operating guidelines in place and abides by county protocols to limit or prevent the infection between patients, the public and fire personnel.”

Officials further said the fire department is working with the Solano County Public Health Department on contact tracing as the firefighter self-quarantines at home.

All Benicia fire stations remain fully staffed and the city of Benicia does not anticipate any disruption to service delivery, officials added.

“Due to health privacy rights, the City is prohibited from providing any information
about the identity of the affected firefighter,” officials said. “The City of Benicia facilitates testing for all employees who may have been exposed.”

Benicia officials are also reminding residents to minimize mixing with people outside your home, wash your hands often, and keep your distance and wear face coverings when out in public.

Those experiencing symptoms should self-quarantine and get tested as soon as possible, officials said.

Information on testing sites is available through the Solano County Public Health Department:

www.solanocounty.com/depts/ph/coronavirus_links/faq___community_test
ing_sites.asp
.

For up-to-date information about the City of Benicia’s response to COVID-19, go
to www.ci.benicia.ca.us/coronavirus.

Published by John Glidden

John Glidden is a freelance journalist reporting on the city of Vallejo. The native Vallejoan also covers the local school district, Vallejo elections, and public safety.

One thought on “[Brief] Fourth Benicia firefighter tests positive for COVID-19

  1. Thank you, John, for reporting on the outbreak of COVID among Benicia firefighters. As of Friday Nov. 6, Solano County Public Health reported that 210 individuals have tested positive in the City of Benicia. That is less than 1% of Benicia’s population of 27,570 (approx. 8 tenths of 1%). I don’t know how many firefighters are employed in Benicia, but I highly suspect that 4 cases among them amount to a much higher percentage than Benicia as a whole. The same might possibly be said for the 3 additional cases among other City staff. I wonder if the County has done any careful contact tracing among our valued and often heroic Benicia government employees? (Solano County source: https://doitgis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=055f81e9fe154da5860257e3f2489d67)

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