Ocean Beach and Point Loma Locals in the News During the Pandemic

by on April 15, 2020 · 0 comments

in Ocean Beach

Here’s several stories about locals from Ocean Beach or Point Loma that have made the news recently.

Point Loma Mail Carrier – Another Hero on the Front Line

Your local mail carrier, like grocery store workers, healthcare workers, and first responders, are considered essential workers during these difficult times. News 8‘s Abbie Alford went on a ride-along with San Diego U.S. Postal Office worker, Mia Gabriel, to see the precautions she is taking to not only keep the public safe, but also her family.

“[I] Usually [would] stop by, talk or hug, but now I see everybody on their balcony or driving by making sure I’m safe,” said Mia. On her route in Point Loma, Mia is well known and loved. Residents walk or drive by and yell “hi Mia” from afar. “I’ve known them for years and we usually are close and do chatting,” she said.

Mia has worked for the U.S. Postal Service for 31 years. She said COVID-19 is tougher than delivering mail in the rain. “I work safe all the time, but it’s thinking of it that is a little harder,” she said. Mia wears a mask and gloves. She remember to not touch her face. She knows her job is important because she delivers essential items such as mail prescriptions. “I feel safe. The only thing I worry about is coming home to my loved ones,” said Mia.

She even added an extra layer of protection in the back of her vehicle. “This is my washing station I made because I took it upon myself to keep safe on my own. I’m not going to depend on other people to keep me safe,” said the letter carrier. Each day she fills a container with water and washes her gloves first and then her hands. Mia also sanitizes her vehicle. “This is the soap our management has given us,” she said.

While the CDC has stated there are no cases of COVID-19 being spread through the mail, they do recommend washing your hands after handling the mail.

To keep mail carriers safe, customers have kindly left sanitizing wipes and wiped down shared mailboxes. “Keep the mailboxes clean. If there is more than one person checking the mailbox wash it down,” said Mia. While Mia knows this isn’t the normal, she hopes she can bring some normalcy to an uncertain time in our lives. “We are here for you guys. We are here for everyone – for my family and everyone,” said Mia. The retail area of the post office now has Plexiglas between the workers and customers. There is also tape to mark a six feet distance between customers in line.

Thank you Abbie Alford, News8 and the cameraman. Here’s the link.

How to protect against coronavirus on packages and mail:

There are some simple solutions to help keep your family safe. “Anything that you bring into your home that you didn’t have control over, you should probably look at carefully,” said Eric McDonald, the County of San Diego’s medical director of epidemiology. So, how can you protect yourself from coronavirus on packages?

“I open my mail every day. I am able to look at it and throw away what I don’t need and recycle some, actually most. Then, I wash my hands afterwards before I do something else. If you do something as simple as that, you’re going to be well protected in your home,” said Dr. McDonald. But do packages really pose a risk?

News 8 asked an infectious disease expert at Johns Hopkins Medicine. “It is possible for objects to get contaminated from the hands of someone who just handed you an object,” said Dr. Juan Dumois, who specializes in pediatric infectious disease at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St Petersburg, Florida. “We think that the virus can survive on the surfaces of packages and other objects for at least several hours. So, if you do get an object delivered to the home or bring an object from outside the home into the home, you can try to disinfect it,” said Dr. Dumois.

Disinfecting your mail, what does that look like? “Some people are preparing sprays of common household disinfectants or even diluted bleach,” said Dr. Dumois. “If you want to make the diluted bleach, the formula is four teaspoons of bleach and a quart of water,” said Dumois. Use a spray bottle to mist your mail or boxes delivered to your home, they will get wet, but dry up pretty quickly. From News8.

The “Bubble Man” of OB

A video that recently went viral seemed to be a sign of the times showing social distancing taken to an extreme. The man in the video has become known as the “Bubble Man of Ocean Beach,” but what seemed like a gimmick is the man’s way of getting a message across.  The cell phone video that spread on social media shows a man rolling through the streets of Ocean Beach in a giant plastic bubble. What you may not be able to see is he was also wearing a hazmat suit and mask.

After seeing the video posted on Instagram, News 8 wanted to know, was this really just an extreme form of social distancing or was there more to the story? So, after little social stalking, News 8 tracked “Bubble Man” down. “I just had a general vision of trying to provoke thought related to the current state of how we’re separated from each other, like life inside a bubble,” Jason Chase said.

Tuesday afternoon Chase, a local artist and interior designer, suited up and went for a stroll in OB for News 8. His goal is to share the message of what motivated him to buy the bubble and take it out on the streets in the first place. “You can see here, it’s all closed off on the beach,” he said as News 8 met up with him while observing social distancing near the Ocean Beach pier. “I’ve never seen anything like it.”

The pandemic was definitely the beginning of his vision but for Chase and many other families, the coronavirus is about much more than closed beaches and businesses. The virus is a direct threat to their loved ones. In this case, it’s a threat to Chase’s 10-year-old son Maximus.

His 14-year-old son was there Tuesday helping him pump up the bubble while News 8 filmed. “I have another son and he has cystic fibrosis, that means if he gets the slightest infection in his lungs, it could possibly be fatal for him,” Chase said. As an artist, he knew an extreme version of social distancing would catch people’s attention and hopefully inspire them to take precautions. “Just try and do your best to try and keep it away from others and that is definitely at the center of what I was trying to purvey,” said Chase.

The bubble obviously makes people do a double-take. Chase can only hope people look beyond the outer sphere and take his message to heart and think about what’s really at stake. “Someone like my son could be seriously hospitalized or something like that or worse. I hope everyone would think about it and do what they have to do to keep others safe and themselves,” he said. News8

Church volunteers working to repair 300,000 masks for medical staff

Rock Church volunteers have been working since March 30 to restore elastic straps on N-95 masks to protect people from COVID-19. The San Diego church project hopes to restore 300,000 masks over the next few weeks, CBN news reports.

Those who volunteer to assist with the project are screened for the coronavirus prior to starting work on the masks and must maintain social distancing by sitting six feet away from other volunteers. …

The process is simple but tedious. Volunteers must remove the original elastic from the mask before they can secure a new one. Once restored, the masks will be put to use throughout San Diego. Miles McPherson, pastor of Rock Church, says the project will take several weeks. We need to go over and above for our medical staff right now,” the pastor says. “They have an important job right now and it’s up to us to help in any way that we can. It’s really just a matter of coming alongside, giving the most practical help we can give.” McPherson calls it an honour to serve nurses and doctors in their county during this time. Volunteers are stationed in Point Loma, City Heights, El Cajon, and San Marcos.



{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Older Article:

Newer Article: