OKC Fire Department Enacts 'Level Red' Emergency Staffing Plan After 10 Firefighters Test Positive For COVID-19

Tuesday, June 23rd 2020, 8:34 am
By: News 9


The Oklahoma City Fire Department has enacted a "Level Red" emergency staffing plan after 10 firefighters tested positive for COVID-19, and 55 others were placed in quarantine.

Fire officials said the plan consists of three tiered stages with specific trigger points.

"Level Green" is triggered when a large scale emergency is acknowledged. Fire officials monitor the situation and begin to prepare to take further action during the level.

"Level Yellow" is triggered when 18 people on any one shift or 36 people among all three shifts in operations are placed in quarantine. This level is also triggered when two people on any shift or five people in the Operations Division are positive with COVID-19. The department will refrain from using citywide staffing during this level.

"Level Red" occurs when 25 or more people on any one shift or 50 firefighters among all three shifts in operation are placed in quarantine. A level red is also triggered when five or more people from any single shift or 10 people in all of fire operations test positive for COVID-19. The actions taken during a level red are as follows:

  1. Leave requests (accrued time off) will not be approved in advance during a Level Red activation
  2. Temporary personnel transfers may be necessary to enhance staffing. An example would be where a fire station has a firefighter who is on long-term injury leave. Another firefighter could be temporarily assigned to that fire station to help maintain minimum staffing.
  3. Staffing is handled at the station level each day. Personal leave (accrued time off) may be cancelled to maintain necessary staffing levels.
  4. If off-duty personnel are “called back” to work to maintain minimum staffing, only firefighters from that same fire station will be utilized.
  5. As a last resort, apparatus may be placed out of service as deemed necessary by the Fire Chief or his designee.