Communications Program Manager
KIRKLAND, Wash. – The City continues to operate its Emergency Operations Center to coordinate our response to the presence of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in our community.
This remains a dynamic event. We currently have twenty-seven firefighters and two police officers in quarantine. As additional cases of coronavirus have been confirmed, we have completed our due diligence and identified additional firefighters to place in quarantine. We anticipate that this could continue to happen as the situation evolves. We have also been notified that some of our firefighters in quarantine are demonstrating flu like symptoms. We are working closely with Public Health – Seattle & King County and adhering to their testing protocols.
“We advise community members to stay informed on the most recent updates from our public health agencies and the CDC,” said Fire Chief Joseph Sanford. “Please note that we are not accepting donations from the public of any kind at this time. The best way for the community to help is to implement advice from public health and get yourself and your family prepared.”
The Kirkland Fire and Police Departments remain fully staffed and are responding to calls as normal. City’s first responders have CDC-recommended personal protection equipment and are following recommended protocols.
The City has received requests from residents wondering how they can assist in the response. The most important thing people can do right now is heed Public Health - Seattle & King County’s recommendations and take specific actions to reduce the risk individuals and families, including:
• More hand washing; less face touching. Regular handwashing for at least 20 seconds will decrease risk that the virus is transmitted.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
• Cover mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing.
• Avoid contact with people who are sick.
• Stay home while you are sick and avoid close contact with others.
• Be prepared at home:
- Have a plan to care for family members should they get sick or schools/offices be closed.
- Know workplace telecommute options and school/daycare policies.
- Stock up on food supplies and prescription medications now to avoid leaving home if you or someone in your household becomes infected.
The City also encourages community members to follow the recommendations provided by the Public Health - Seattle & King County, including:
1. Do not go to the emergency room unless essential. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve those with the most critical needs. If you have symptoms like cough, fever, or other respiratory problems, contact your regular doctor first.
2. Stay home when sick.
3. Practice excellent personal hygiene habits, including handwashing, coughing into tissue or elbow, avoid touching eyes, nose, or mouth.
4. Stay informed. Information is changing frequently. Check and subscribe to Public Health’s website (www.kingcounty.gov/COVID) or Public Health Insider blog.
The City will continue to update its website with information on the COVID-19 outbreak.