COVID-19 Press Release 03/19/2020

Updated: Mar 21, 2020


Mason County Fire District 4 Institutes Infectious Control Safety Officer and Coordinating with Squaxin in Proactive COVID-19 Approach

Shelton, WA, March 19, 2020 – Mason County Fire District 4 instituted a new policy to develop a temporary position for an Infectious Control Safety Officer to mitigate and prevent the spread of an infectious disease or virus. The department also became a supporting asset to the Squaxin Island Tribe’s Emergency Management. We are participating in an Area Command Operation to help protect Arcadia and Kamilche areas.

“The COVID-19 Safety Officer will have primary responsibility for ensuring all First Responders remain as safe and protected as The safety officer will be available during every shift, and responsibilities will include First Responder equipment, vehicle and facilities decontamination in addition to personal protective equipment inspection and training in response to incidents where COVID-19 is suspected. “The goal of these actions is to protect the public and our first responders to the greatest degree possible.” Chief Burbridge added.

Over the past few week’s cases of COVID-19 have continued to escalate in the Puget Sound Area and around the globe. Mason County Public Health has confirmed the first in county positive case on March 17th. “We now have confirmation that the virus is here. Our department has always been proud of our ability to remain agile in meeting the needs of the community and we have been working hard to proactively ensure our readiness. This is even more critical at a time where new information on this new virus is presenting almost daily,” says Chief Burbridge.

The World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic on March 11, 2020, with a National Emergency being announced the next day. Local, Federal, State and County governments continue to work together to understand better how to flatten to curve and mitigate further spread in our communities.

“Our first responders are on the front lines, focused on community, collaboration, and transparency,” said Chief Burbridge. “The greater the darkness, the greater the light, and honestly one of the many beautiful things about a rural area like ours is that each of us can choose to be that light by remembering our neighbors as we come together in the spirit community to face this adversity.”

For more information on Mason County Fire District 4 visit the website at

About Mason County Fire District 4: Mason County Fire District 4 serves 52 square miles, with a varying population of 8000 to 12,000 depending on the season and Little

Creek Casino events, which have temporily been postponed. The district provides structural, wildland and wildland-urban interface fire suppression, operates a basic life support ambulance transport service, provides hazardous materials response, high angle rope rescue, and fire prevention education to our citizens. The protection area includes the Squaxin Island Tribe and areas up to Thurston and Grays Harbor County lines. District #4 serves 52 square miles, with a varying population of 7900 to 15,000 depending on seasonal and Little Creek Casino events

Bob Burbridge