A firefighter battling the Cameron Peak fire in Larimer County has tested positive for COVID-19 and about 25 others had direct contact with the firefighter before the diagnosis.
The Colorado National Guard Rapid Response team is conducting tests and anyone who is positive will be relocated and isolated per the county’s guidelines, fire officials said in a news release Thursday.
The firefighter, who tested positive on Tuesday, worked in a “forward operating base,” a small camp where a limited number of firefighters base, eat and sleep, away from the larger Incident Command Post, the release said. The smaller base limited the firefighters contact with others.
More than 850 people from 35 states have worked on the fire since its start on August 13. So far, four have tested positive for COVID-19, three cases over a week ago and Tuesday’s positive test.
There has been no direct contact between the firefighter and the local community, fire officials said.
“Those who may have been exposed will be tested, relocated and quarantined,” the release said.
Testing is available for all members of the firefighter’s forward operating base.
“We have a responsibility to this community and to other states to ensure that our people are healthy before we send them home,” said Incident Commander Bea Day, in the release. “We know that keeping anyone isolated or quarantined won’t be popular, but it’s the right thing to do.”
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