WEST NEWBURY — Fire Chief Michael Dwyer and Police Chief Jeffrey Durand report that the West Newbury Police and Fire Departments are suspending walk-in services temporarily to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19, the illness associated with the novel coronavirus, to staff and the public.
COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic this week by the World Health Organization and has moved Governor Charlie Baker to declare a State of Emergency in Massachusetts and President Donald Trump to declare a national emergency.
Effective immediately and until further notice, the West Newbury Police and Fire Departments at 401 Main St. are suspending walk-in, non emergency services, and instead are asking residents to contact the police and fire business lines or send an e-mail for non-emergencies.
- West Newbury Police Department business line: 978-363-1212.
- West Newbury Fire Department business line: 978-363-1111.
- Residents looking to fill out a burning permit can do so by clicking here.
- Member of the public can also submit public records requests, LTC renewals and first-time applications by emailing email@example.com.
- The West Newbury Fire Department can also be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Residents are additionally reminded to call 911 in an emergency, and police, firefighters and EMS will respond to various emergency situations as they normally would.
“Reducing the number of people visiting the police and fire stations in person is a simple step we can take to prevent unnecessary risk of exposure to this virus,” Fire Chief Dwyer said. “We thank residents for your understanding, cooperation and patience as we all continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation.”
This is a temporary measure. Officials said they do not know how long these restrictions will be in place.
“It’s important for us all to do what we can to help prevent the spread of this virus, and we thank residents for their understanding as we implement this measure and proceed with social distancing when possible,” Police Chief Durand said. “We also encourage residents to continue washing their hands frequently and thoroughly, stay home when sick, cover your cough and, if you believe you may have this virus, contact your health care provider.”
First responders throughout the nation are practicing social distancing when responding to emergency calls. When responding to a call for service, first responders will ask residents to do the same, which entails keeping separated by approximately 6 feet if possible.
Police and firefighters have also been instructed not to shake hands or make any other personal contact unless absolutely necessary (or necessary during a life-threatening emergency or medical emergency) to avoid transmitting the virus.
The West Newbury Police and Fire Departments are on-duty 24 hours a day, seven days a week. These temporary measures will be reviewed on a continuous basis. When changes are necessary, they will be communicated to the public.