OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash. — A firefighter in Okanogan County has tested positive for COVID-19, according to the Washington state Department of Natural Resources.
The DNR firefighter was part of the team battling the Anglin Fire near Tonasket, officials said. The firefighter was asymptomatic.
“All protocols were adhered to after the test, including contact tracing, quarantining, and outreach to firefighting partners,” DNR said in a statement.
14 other firefighters who came into contact with the person have been quarantined. They currently aren’t showing any symptoms. This is the third DNR firefighter to test positive for COVID-19.
“Our wildland firefighters are our first line of defense when communities are facing a wildfire,” said Commissioner of Public Lands, Hilary Franz. “Unfortunately, despite all possible precautions, firefighters do congregate and work in close quarters when responding to wildfires. That means the stakes are high: a widespread outbreak among our firefighters would impede our ability to keep Washingtonians safe.”
The Anglin Fire was contained on August 1 and the fire camp has been demobilized.