5 Manhattan firefighters test positive for coronavirus


Photo from Manhattan Fire Department

MANHATTAN, Kan. (KSNT) – The Manhattan Fire Department announced Friday five firefighters have tested positive for coronavirus.

MFD said the firefighters went to an event off-duty and are believed to have contracted the virus there.

“We have worked on contingency plans for a potential outbreak situation since the beginning of the pandemic to ensure uninterrupted fire service for Manhattan,” Fire Chief Scott French said. “We will continue to provide reliable fire and emergency services to our residents as we always have.”

The fire department said they’re doing extensive contact tracing to determine if other firefighters may have been exposed. The Riley County Health Department is also doing contact tracing to find contacts with the public and will notify anyone who was a close contact.

Members of the fire department who had close contact with a positive case will be tested and will follow CDC guidance for return to work, according to the health department.

“We are hopeful for a quick recovery for everyone affected by this virus, including our firefighters,” French said. “Unfortunately, this shows how quickly the virus can spread in certain situations and that no agency is immune from the impacts.”

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