Monette taking precautions

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Monette Mayor Bob Blankenship, city councilmen, police chief and fire chief met Monday evening to collectively review the city's plans to take care of residents during the time of the coronavirus self-containment.

“We have equipment ready and supplies ready to take care of our residents,” Mayor Blankenship said. “We are financially sound and prepared. We are all going to have to work together and stay informed in order to get through this emergency period.”

Fire Chief David Clark reported on a meeting with Craighead County Emergency Services earlier in the day.

“We have to be prepared to protect ourselves and our people,” Clark said. “We have the crew and equipment in place to do that. We have supplies stocked and ready. We were told that 50 percent of people might possibly get the virus. Health officials are requesting people practice social distance. There are 22 confirmed cases of the virus in Arkansas at this time. They are estimating that the virus precautions could last from 8 to 20 weeks. The hot spots right now are in Europe as well as the east and west coasts of USA. We are about 8 to 10 days behind Italy, who is believed to be at its peak. The virus can live on surfaces about 72 hours. Concerns are that it might come back around in the fall. It starts off as fever and a dry cough and later gets in the respiratory system.”

Contact can be made to website www.uamshealthnow for free 24/7 online screening for Covid-19 (Coronavirus).

“We are looking out for the needs of families,” Blankenship said. “Church groups all have different missions to provide help, like supplying clothing, food, and the city's Samaritan Purse. Some people may need help with utilities if they are off work for some time. Our city is doing everything we can to help. Letters will be hand delivered to homes in town Tuesday to explain where help can be found for a variety of needs. The letter will have a lot of contact numbers in it, including those of city officials.”

“The more numbers people have of someone to contact, the more likely they will be to call for help,” said alderman Tom Carroll.

“Many of our elderly residents can’t drive to Jonesboro, and are most likely to suffer,” said alderman Kristian Nuckles. “We need to do everything we can to help them if they need something.”

“Our policemen are committed to helping people, wherever we can,” said Police Chief Brian Carmichael.”

Monette Baptist Church is closed for a week, and others are considering closing. Monette Manor is not allowing patient visitors. City hall is open to drive-through window only. Farmers Market is delivering groceries to area residents with minimum $40 order. BIC School is providing sack lunches for students 18 and younger Tuesday through Friday this week in designated pick up spots in Monette, Black Oak and Leachville.