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Farmington firefighter tests positive; first responders take precautions


Navajo Times | Donovan Quintero
A paramedic with Gallup EMS conducts a training on how to work with patients suspected to have the coronavirus on March 12 in Gallup.

 

WINDOW ROCK

A first responder in Farmington has contracted the coronavirus.

Georgette M. Allen, spokesperson for the City of Farmington, in a news release, said a member of the Farmington Fire Department tested positive and was placed on a 14-day self-quarantine.

Allen said the FFD employee did not contract the virus while performing their duties. No other FFD employees or members of the public were exposed, according to a New Mexico Epidemiology Office investigation.

On Friday, Navajo Nation Police Chief Phillip Francisco revealed two of his police officers were quarantined for 14 days after being exposed to the highly contagious virus in Chilchinbeto.

To protect themselves, Francisco said police officers donned a suit called 3M Disposable Protective Coverall Safety Suit, masks, and rubber gloves while patrolling in Chilchinbeto.

The Gallup Police Department, on March 11, began purchasing Clorox bleach and spray bottles their police officers could use to maintain a clean and safe environment in their patrol vehicles.

Spokesperson Capt. Erin Toadlena-Pablo said on March 11 the department has personal protection equipment for officers.

 As a public service, the Navajo Times is making all coverage of the coronavirus pandemic fully available on its website. Please support the Times by subscribing.

 See where the virus is on the Navajo Nation now.

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On March 12, Gallup police, the Gallup Fire Department and emergency management personnel conducted a training on how to work with a person suspected to have COVID-19.

During the training, while transporting a firefighter playing the role of a sick patient to Gallup Indian Medical Center, the hospital called off the training to tend to an actual patient who was suspected to have the virus.

The patient, a healthcare worker, drove into the hospital parking lot that was turned into a “drive-through” testing area, and tested.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends people keep a distance of six feet between one another, frequently wash their hands for 20 seconds, stay home when travel isn’t necessary, and not gather in groups of more than 10 people.



About The Author

Donovan Quintero

"Dii, Diné bi Naaltsoos wolyéhíígíí, ninaaltsoos át'é. Nihi cheii dóó nihi másání ádaaní: Nihi Diné Bizaad bił ninhi't'eelyá áádóó t'áá háadida nihizaad nihił ch'aawóle'lágo. Nihi bee haz'áanii at'é, nihisin at'é, nihi hózhǫ́ǫ́jí at'é, nihi 'ach'ą́ą́h naagééh at'é. Dilkǫǫho saad bee yájíłti', k'ídahoneezláo saad bee yájíłti', ą́ą́ chánahgo saad bee yájíłti', diits'a'go saad bee yájíłti', nabik'íyájíłti' baa yájíłti', bich'į' yájíłti', hach'į' yándaałti', diné k'ehgo bik'izhdiitįįh. This is the belief I do my best to follow when I am writing Diné-related stories and photographing our events, games and news. Ahxéhee', shik'éí dóó shidine'é." - Donovan Quintero is an award-winning Diné journalist, who is based in Window Rock, Arizona. He can be contacted at dq@navajotimes.com.

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