For the first time in many months, the West Grove Fire Company conducted its monthly business meeting in person on Wednesday evening.
Utilizing the company's New London Station, about 50 members attended the meeting, held in a set up to promote social distancing, with all participants in masks. With all the apparatus bay doors up, the meeting was nearly completely outside -- all factors designed to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Since March, the WGFC has been operating under a comprehensive COVID-19 Operations plan designed to assure the safety and health of our first responders during these extraordinary times. Because the organization is the community's first line of response for fire, rescue and EMS, it is critical to ensure that volunteer and career emergency responders remain protected from the virus to assure availability of emergency personnel.
Beginning in March, monthly business meetings were conducted by video conference in keeping with safety protocols and in accordance with state regulations on meetings of this size. The WGFC also had not been conducting public relations and training activities. In person fire training sessions also re-started recently -- conducted in small groups, and keeping social distancing and mask use in mind.
While our area has done a good job in slowing the spread of COVID-19, Chester County has had 3200 known cases of the virus, and just over 300 deaths. All are reminded that the basic steps of frequent hand washing, social distancing, and the use of masks are the most effective steps to protect against transmission of the virus.