New guidelines for Cleveland Police on Ebola raise concerns abou - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

New guidelines for Cleveland Police on Ebola raise concerns about equipment

First responder gear to be used for safety workers. (WOIO) First responder gear to be used for safety workers. (WOIO)
Some Cleveland police officers say they may not be able to do what they're being told to do when encountering a possible Ebola patient. The concern, protective equipment.
 
We've obtained new rules being issued to Cleveland Police officers for handling a call when someone might be infected with Ebola. The standards include staying at least six feet away and putting on a mask and gloves.
 
But the union points out many officers don't have a mask and gloves.
 
Or, they have old first responder kits. The kits are so old some officers we checked with don't even know where to find theirs anymore.
 
Last year, we showed you the first responder kits have gas masks and gloves and boots—equipment for a gas or chemical attack. The kits were handed out to Cleveland officers from 2005-2008. We saw canisters, or filters that expired.
 
City hall says it is buying new protective gear for police and firefighters, but that won't get here until sometime next week.
 
"When someone gets sick or hurt at the airport for example, they're going to call police, and fire and EMS, and we' re going to be right there," said Jeff Follmer with the Cleveland Police Patrolman's Association. "We've got to be able to slip something on right away."
 
Although those new guidelines also tell officers to call EMS. All paramedics already carry protective gear.
 
The union plans to meet with the safety director about this.
 
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