NAHANT — Chief Dean Palombo wishes to provide an update to residents and business owners on the status of Fire, Rescue and Emergency Medical Services in Town and procedures that have been put in place to protect first responders and the public from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
The Nahant Fire Department and the Town’s advanced life support provider, Atlantic Ambulance, are fully staffed and prepared to respond to any emergency.
The Fire Station and lobby are currently closed to the public. Residents are encouraged to call the Fire Department business line at 781-581-1235 for most inquiries. Always dial 911 in an emergency. Residents are asked not to dial 911 for questions about COVID-19/Coronavirus. The state has set up the phone number 211 to answer questions that residents may have concerning COVID-19.
Firefighters and medics may wear additional personal protective equipment (PPE) when responding to calls and their interactions with the public will be different, out of an abundance of caution and for the safety of first responders.
If emergency fire or medical services are needed, residents should inform the 911 dispatcher if they or anyone they have been in contact with is experiencing signs and symptoms consistent with the COVID-19 virus. The dispatcher should also be alerted if individuals or anyone they live with or have come in contact with have been required to self-quarantine.
“As the novel coronavirus continues to spread, these procedures will be critical for protecting our staff as well as patients from this virus,” Chief Palombo said. “Residents are reminded that they should continue practicing social distancing, frequent hand washing, and so on, and should you need medical assistance in the near future, please inform the dispatcher if you have symptoms of the coronavirus or may have been exposed so that our staff can take precautions to stay healthy.”
COVID-19 is the illness associated with the novel coronavirus. It has led to declarations of a Global Pandemic by the World Health Organization, a national emergency by President Donald Trump and a state of emergency for Massachusetts.
During this time of global pandemic, public health officials are strongly advising citizens to practice social distancing — remaining at least six feet away from others.
Chief Palombo shares the following public guidelines, which have also been circulated widely by public health professionals and physicians:
- If you are sick in any way, stay home
- If you are over age 60 or have a preexisting medical condition, stay home
- If you have a fever, aches, a cough, or sore throat, stay home and isolate yourself from others
- If you can do your job from home, stay home and do so
Residents should continue to follow recommendations made by the Massachusetts Department of Health (DPH) and the CDC:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, including under your fingernails. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer (at least 60% alcohol content) can be used when soap and water are not available.
- Keep your hands away from your face.
- Cover your nose and mouth when sneezing and coughing with a tissue and discard it immediately. Cough into the sleeve over your elbow instead of your hand. Wash your hands often when coughing and sneezing.
- Stay away from people who are sick and stay home when you are sick.