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Coronavirus challenging for crews fighting Arizona wildfires

Posted at 12:36 PM, Jul 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-26 19:59:11-04

PHOENIX (AP) — This year's wildfire season has been an extra challenging one for firefighters with massive fires around Arizona, as well as changes in their routine due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Pre-pandemic firefighters had their own way of life including in-person morning briefings, respectful handshakes and community meals.

According to the Arizona Republic, now every meal is pre-packaged and firefighters have to eat 6 to 10 feet apart, crew members wave at each other instead of shaking hands and they attend virtual briefs on their smartphones or radios.

One 33-year firefighting veteran described it as a radically different environment.