144th Fighter Wing airmen help health care workers during COVID-19 outbreak

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- The 144th Fighter Wing says they're currently assisting with medical services in two cities.

In the coastal town of Pacific Grove near Monterey Bay, they're helping with passengers quarantined after being on a Princess Cruise ship. In Sacramento, they're helping distribute medical supplies.

144th Fighter Wing Lt. Col. Jordan Darnauer says they are ready to do even more if duty calls.

"Our members are standing by, ready and capable and able to respond when and if a requirement comes down our way for another humanitarian response," Darnauer said.

The Air National Guard Branch based in Fresno specializes in medical response and is ready to assist where the need is.

"Our specialization is in CBRN response, which is chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear response for anything that comes our way, and in this case, it is biological," Darnauer said.

At the moment, troops have not been deployed in Central California.

Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom announced the California National Guard would be assisting food banks with distributing food.

Darnauer says they have not been asked to help with that effort, but understands things could change.

"We are following the guidelines that have been put out, and it is a very fluid, moving, ongoing situation, and we are adapting as we required," Darnauer said.

At their base, located near Fresno Yosemite International Airport, they're following the CDC's precautionary measures

"We are asking those questions of everybody who comes on base, and make sure that people are helping to self-identify if they are feeling ill or sick," Darnauer said. "We are also doing temperatures reads on folks."

They're also practicing social distancing and are cleaning and sanitizing their facilities more frequently.

Darnauer says a few of their members have been tested for COVID-19, and those results are still pending.

For more news coverage on the coronavirus and COVID-19 go to abc30.com/coronavirus/.
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