FAIRVIEW PARK

Safety officials have taken steps to continue fire service for Fairview Park after a city firefighter tested positive for COVID-19 (coronavirus).

The firefighter was off duty when he became sick and tested positive for the virus, said Fire Chief Tony Raffin.

“He was not on any runs and did not have any contact with other firefighters, city workers or the public,” Raffin said.

City officials are not identifying the firefighter, but they said he is in self-quarantine at home through April 4. The Cuyahoga County Board of Health determined that no one else had been exposed to the virus, Raffin said.

To reduce the possibility of an entire shift being sidelined due to a positive test, each shift is being split in two and staying in separate quarters, Raffin said. One crew is staying in the fire station and the other is staying in the Senior Center behind City Hall.

The senior center crew’s equipment will be housed in the basement of the Fire Department facilities at City Hall so it can be retrieved quickly, Raffin said..

The changes took effect at 7 a.m. Sunday.

“There will be little to no effect on the delivery of services to our residents and the community, and most importantly everyone’s safety.” Raffin said.

The change will not affect the delivery of congregate meals by Senior Center staff, city officials said.

In a statement released Sunday night, Fairview officials said it is unclear how the firefighter became infected and that he is expected to make a full recovery.

Access to the department has been limited to personnel only since March 11. “Upon learning of the positive test result, the Fire Department implemented further practices to help protect our employees and the community,” the statement said.

Contact this reporter at assoceditor@westlifenews.com or 440-871-5797.

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