On Thursday, in his role as state fire marshal, Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis highlighted his office’s efforts to help firefighters and first responders during the coronavirus pandemic.
“The State Fire Marshal’s Office has been in constant contact with the Executive Boards of the Florida Fire Chiefs Association and the Florida Professional Firefighters to receive reports on COVID-19 response and recovery efforts from first responders statewide,” Patronis’ office noted.
“Since February, I have been in constant contact with firefighters statewide to assess their needs and readiness regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. As we continue to navigate the response to this public health emergency and begin the phased reopening of the state, I remain committed to ensuring our first responders have the tools they need to keep our communities safe. Through a joint data collection effort, fire service leaders have reported that more than 1,000 firefighters have been taken offline due to the threat of COVID-19 and nearly 300 have tested positive statewide. This is why it is imperative that we work in close coordination with state and local officials to continue to provide priority COVID-19 testing and the necessary personal protection equipment and resources for our first responders,” Patronis said.
“This data is also crucial to our fire departments who work to support each other and address staffing needs as they arise. These heroes are on the frontlines every day and my office is committed to supporting our firefighters as they navigate the response to this pandemic and ensuring they have the tools they need to protect our communities,” he added.