BERKELEY – A decontamination site for emergency vehicles has been established off the Garden State Parkway in Berkeley Township, officials said.
The site, created as part of a partnership between the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office and the Ocean County Police Chiefs Association, has already serviced hundreds of vehicles, said Sheriff Michael G. Mastronardy.
“The site is set up for any police, fire or first aid vehicle in the county, especially those that have transported someone suspected of having the coronavirus,” he said.
He noted that people have been thinking that it’s a testing site for COVID-19, and have to be turned away. The COVID-19 site is opening at Ocean County College on March 30.
“This site is only to disinfect emergency vehicles,” he stressed.
Emergency responders are invited to visit the site, which is open noon to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 2-6 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. There is no appointment needed. It is located off Exit 77.
Vehicles are sprayed with a non-toxic, biodegradable product called Aseptic Plus manufactured in Nashville, Tennessee. It has also been used on the belts and shoes of some of the emergency responders.
“It’s important we keep our emergency responders – all of our police, first aid and fire personnel – safe during the coronavirus outbreak,” Mastronardy said. “Along with all of our health care professionals, emergency responders are heavily relied upon by our residents. We need to do all we can to keep them safe.”
Additional locations are expected to open soon. One will likely be in Brick, run by the Brick Township Office of Emergency Management and another would be in Jackson, run by the Jackson Township Police Department.
The Sheriff’s Office worked with Stafford Township Police Chief Thomas Dellane in establishing the site in Berkeley Township and is working with Jackson Township Police Chief Matt Kunz and Brick Township Police Chief James Riccio on those respective sites.
“I appreciate the efforts of all of our police chiefs and all of our emergency responders,” Mastronardy said. “These partnerships go a long way in making certain we have what we need to keep our responders safe and to assist our residents.”