Manatee County in need of protective equipment for first responders

Manatee County

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MANATEE COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — Manatee County is putting out an urgent request for personal protective equipment for first responders and healthcare workers amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Jacob Saur, the director of Public Safety, says the are hoping for new unused items from a variety of businesses.

“The need right now is for N-95 masks, surgical masks and gloves,” Saur said.


WHAT TO KNOW:

  • Florida reporting 8,010 cases and 128 deaths
  • Gov. Ron DeSantis issues ‘stay at home’ order starting April 2 for 30 days
  • Pinellas and Hillsborough counties implementing ‘safer-at-home’ orders
  • Travelers from NY tri-state area and New Orleans coming to Florida must quarantine for 14 days under new executive order
  • Florida schools closed through at least May 1

Some of the needed items may come from businesses that are temporarily closed due to the cornonavirus crisis.

“We’re looking for the construction trade, barber shops, any shops that might have closed during this time,” Saur said.

Businesses interested in donating these items are asked to call (941) 744-3939.

Saur says the county will make arraignments to pick up the needed items and they they will be distributed to areas of greatest need among first responders and health care professionals. In Tampa, Andrew Carter the vice president of the firefighters union says the city has the supplies it needs for right now.

“We have a supply of the PPE at our stations and we have a surplus and I’m sure our staff is doing daily orders,” Carter said.

Across the state, other agencies are not faring so well, and Saur says his agency and others are having to look for other sources for the protective equipment they need.

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