Calgary firefighter tested postive for COVID-19; no further cases reported

Calgary Fire Department fire truck. LIVEWIRE CALGARY FILE PHOTO

A Calgary firefighter tested positive for COVID-19 in early August, forcing a half-day closure of a city fire station.

According to the city, the firefighter stayed away from work when he started feeling ill. He immediately contacted 811 to arrange for testing. Once the test came back positive the Calgary Fire Department management was notified, along with all the firefighter’s colleagues.

The station, which the city has chosen not to identify to protect the firefighter’s identity, was shut down for approximately half a day for a deep cleaning.

The on-duty crew for the area was based out of a neighbouring station while their station was cleaned. The city said there was no impact on call times as a result.

Earlier this year, the Calgary Firefighter’s Association said members would go to a 24-hour shift to cut potential COVID-19 exposure. They typically work 10-hour day shifts or 14-hour overnight shifts.

That move would limit how often firefighters would interact with different people, including family, between shifts.

“The health and safety of our employees and citizens is always a priority for our organization,” a statement from the City read.

“We continually strive to maintain a safe and healthy work environment while preventing any disruption in services.”

Firefighters in the affected station were advised to contact 811 for further direction, the city said.

No additional cases were reported after the result of this single case.

About Darren Krause 598 Articles
Journalist, husband, father, golfer, writer, painter, video gamer, gardener, amateur botanist, dreamer, realist... never in that order.

15 Comments

  1. Not surprising, the lack of social distancing from the fire dept at “work” has been appalling! Since Covid hit, they barely go into medical calls and typically sit in their truck with lights on staging. Their risk is very low. Not like ems and police dept that have very frequent and prolonged interaction with the public. Yet here is the PR again, at least there was no insinuation that it was contracted at work. Since they work 24hr shifts now and yes for about 95% of the shift they are at the hall sleeping eating and playing games, they now have more time for their second jobs, well rested. And I’ve first hand seen multiple fire fighters working their second jobs, together, not social distancing!

      • Not really, just explaining the scam that is the fire dept. Just educating the public. Many believe the calgary fire dept are medically trained, working hard, risking their lives, life savers. Unfortunately, most of this is PR. You know they’re not working much if you can schedule 24hr shifts. I hear many go 24hrs without a single call. I don’t think first aid and cpr make you a medical professional or qualified to go into high acuity medical calls as first response. At one point they were valuable to ems for lift assists, now they refuse to even attend those calls. Off the record many admit they don’t know what they’re doing on medical calls? Admit they’re slow and sleep through the night. That they don’t fight fires often, some retire without ever fighting a single fire. This is about public misconception, a PR machine that perpetuates falsehoods that the public blindly eats up. One really expensive service that costs the public alot of money but provides very little service……

  2. Ok Josh. I’m not sure where you are getting your info from but it’s terribly inaccurate. You don’t like firefighters that’s fine. Spewing lies and false information about a group of people who’s whole job is about helping other people is shameful. If all you think firefighters do is medical calls and fight fires you are sadly mistaken. You should educate yourself on the full scope of what they do for the community. Anyways have a nice life you sound like someone I’d rather not talk to anymore….

    • You sound like one of those fire fighters thats sleeps well at night! Actually my facts are correct, approx 60% of ff calls are medical assists, the next most frequent call is a catalogue alarm (false alarm). The numbers say 4% for fires but that includes pots on stoves and dumpster fires etc. I will never discount the fact that the fire dept is heavy involved in the community but its our money that pays for all of this involvement. And I’m not sure what the purpose of this involvement is other than to continue to make your precedence known and fool the public into believing you are this much needed resource that must continue to be funded at a ridiculous cost to the public. No lift assists, no bio hazard cleanup, less responses into homes since covid, minimal medical training, the list goes on. Coloring books and bday visits only go so far.

  3. Josh you sound like someone who failed the fire department’s entrance exam and have an axe to grind? Your information about the fire dept is inaccurate, they still do medical calls( lift assists are a small portion), lots of bio hazard clean ups, same amount of responses to people’s houses, medically trained to an EMR level (minimum requirement to work in an ambulance in Alberta) and the list goes on. Oh and their hugely successful birthday visit program that went on over the lock down is over.. Maybe try and talk to someone from the fire department about this stuff before you spill a bunch of garbage that’s not true? Cheers

  4. Wrong again, I’ve never been interested in seeking recognition for things I don’t do, that would be the fire dept. I talk to firefighters all the time but rely on what I see, and the facts. I don’t rely on the fire fighters to tell me how hard they work lol, I see it all the time, washing personal vehicles, pickle ball, movies, regularly making mistakes on medical calls, haven’t you figured it out yet, I see it all first hand!!! The public might be fooled by the PR but you lying to yourself and others just speaks to your lack of integrity. Fire departments are struggling to stay relevant, overpaid and barely utilized. In the US, they’ve been bankrupting towns. The public will one day wise up to this ridiculous department. Stay classy…..

  5. My lack of integrity? Stay classy? Ridiculous department(that has a 98% citizen satisfaction rating, highest in the city by the way)? Josh I can well imagine what your job is. Instead of tearing down a group of people that you likely work with in a team atmosphere on a daily basis, maybe try and understand what and how other departments work together. See someone making a mistake, maybe talk to them? They may have learned it from someone not as perfect as you? You can teach them your perfect ways, or tear them down online on your keyboard. I guess that’s your choice. You obviously have an axe to grind so I guess you can stay in the 2% group of people who aren’t satisfied with the Calgary fire department. Adios

    • Again, all about the fire dept PR machine, 98% satisfaction. You’re proving my point! Yes you have great PR but do very little work for it! While I stick to the facts and the numbers. There’s the difference. But I don’t go home to my family and lie about what I do, they know what daily exhaustion looks like. No axe to grind just wish honesty became part of the fire dept training. Mostly great people just not honest about what you do, and what you know nothing about!

  6. Ok let me get this straight. The media gets ahold of the fact the fire department had to close a hall for a half day because an employee contracted Covid? They get a statement saying yes it’s true. Never insinuated it was work related at all. You go on a rant about lazy untrained none social distancing fireman because that’s what you think you see. Then it’s some kind of fire department “pr” machine that’s pulling the wool over 98% of the people of Calgary’s eyes. Got it. I think you need to realize what the role of the first responder team actually is. All agencies play a role in keeping the public safe. If you choose to be blind to the value a well trained, staffed, accountable, and professional fire department adds to the team then there really isn’t a lot to talk about anymore. I wish you well in your career. Maybe the next time the firefighters help you do your job better you will change your tune. I doubt it but hey there’s always a chance.

  7. That’s the issue, ” well trained and accountable” don’t really apply to you. Unfortunately, your training as first responders is minimal and does little to assist ems on high acuity calls. The AED you carry has value if you arrive before ems for a cardiac arrest and narcan (when used appropriately which is a struggle for CFD) can be of value. The public watches US television and think CFD and ems are all providing a similar service, not close to accurate. If Cfd had trained professionals that could perform assessments on patients that would be a different story, but what i see are daily and weekly mistakes and no interest in fixing them and becoming competent but rather a motivation to get back to the hall for food, a good movie, to continue working on a non work related project or sleep etc. Sorry standing and staring is not a useful skill. Lift assists, which ems found value in, was helpful but you don’t do those anymore, and yes that is the most valuable and helpful assistance myself and many others feel you added to ems calls, can’t remember every asking a firefighter opinion on medical or traumatic call in all my years, you just don’t have the training. You notice you’re not really arguing all the points I’ve made but moreso attacking the fact that I don’t like CFD. And that’s not true. More accurate is you don’t provide much in service for your 6 figure salaries and exorbitant pensions. An abundance of resources and very little work. Just not efficient. Round and round we go, you with me being a fire dept hater, and me stating facts and truthful experiences exposing a fraud.

  8. I’ve come to the conclusion now that you sir are a clown! I’ve showed this to a lot of you colleagues now and all have the same reaction. “OMG what a tool”, “please don’t paint us all with that brush”, “fuck I hate idiots like him”, sorry just a few quotes I got. Seems your in the minority with you own peers as well? By the way have you ever thought to ask yourself why it is that CFD is trying to limit its exposure to people these days? What do you think happens if there is a serious outbreak amongst CFD employees? 1 person tested positive so they sent 8 people home and closed a firehall. Who puts out fires and such when more people have to go home? You? I seriously doubt that! Anyway I’m done talking to you.

  9. You keep saying you’re done but keep replying! In the minority with my peers, lol, thats funny, did you ask the wife of a firefighter for the peer review of my comments! In one day I could find 100 colleagues that agree. That’s even funnier that you believe there’s some undying support from other services that are actually busting their asses every day! I can tell you, most are consistently repeating my words daily about you! Every single day, less and less respect, because you don’t ever step up, speak out about the issues and needs of other services. Instead you stand behind the PR machine, welcoming the false notion that CFD fills the gaps, working hard and risking life, true heros. Lol. Keep watching your American TV shows, believing the hype!! Some of us too busy for that!!

  10. Yup that’s about right, name calling. The facts and and the truth are hard to come by on your end.

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