By Ann Frances –
An Irvine fire fighter stationed at Fire Station No. 4 on California St. in the University area is now self-quarantined after contracting COVID-19. As a result, the Orange County Fire Authority has directed 24 of his colleagues with whom he associated to self-isolated.
In a March 20 news conference from the Orange County Fire Authority headquarters, Chief Brian Fennessy reported that the fire fighter who contracted the virus likely was infected through community transmission because he had no known contact with an infected individual.
Chief Fennessy said the fire fighter started feeling sick while at work. He went home and then was tested.
Shortly after the coronavirus outbreak, Irvine’s first responders began following an established protocol that includes wearing protective gear including gowns and eyewear when responding to calls. It’s not clear whether the fire fighter contracted the virus at work or while off duty.
According to a tweet posted to the Orange County Fire Authority website, “OCFA firefighters have responded to many medical aid requests from patients with symptoms that may be consistent with COVID-19.”
Chief Fennessy said during the news conference, “He’s actually feeling better,” referring to the quaratined fire fighter.
All Orange County Fire Authority facilities, the website reports, are closed to the public through March 31.