NewsMissoula County


Missoula firefighter tests positive for COVID-19

Missoula City Fire Department
Posted at 4:14 PM, Jun 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-24 11:26:58-04

MISSOULA — A Missoula Fire Department firefighter has tested positive for COVID-19 the city announced on Tuesday.

Fire Chief Jeff Brandt and the staff are working closely with the staff at the Missoula City-County Health Department. As soon as they learned of the positive test result on Monday, they identified potential contacts, who are quarantined at home pending interviews and COVID-19 tests.

Those contacts include law enforcement officers and ambulance personnel who worked closely with the firefighter.

“City Fire has responded quickly and thoroughly and knowledgeably,” Cindy Farr, Incident Commander for the COVID-19 Response and Health Promotion Division Director at the Health Department, said in a news release. “They have been involved at the high level in Incident Command since March, and they are very knowledgeable.”

Fire department personnel wear protective gear on every call for service. Brandt does not believe there is an exposure risk for members of the public and says the fire department’s customary level of service will not be affected.

Missoula Police Department spokesperson Sgt. Travis Welsh says after "contact tracing" by the Missoula City-County Health Department -- and an examination of "calls for service" -- it's determined that no police officers have been exposed to the positive case at the Missoula City Fire Department.

Welsh says MPD continues to use PPE where applicable while on calls for service.

Earlier on Tuesday, the health department announced that four new cases have arisen in Missoula County. There are 162 active cases across Montana and 14 in Missoula County.

Farr reminds the public that COVID-19 is still in our community, and we are experiencing community spread. People should keep their social circles small, be safe at work and keep track of personal contacts for the previous 14 days.