DELAWARE, Ohio — One week ago, Waterford Signs owner Tim Moore brought his staff together and said they'd be shutting down, not considered an essential business during the coronavirus outbreak.
But that all changed after one phone call from a sign shop business owner in Texas looking for help fulfilling an order for a mutual friend Delaware County EMS Director Jeff Fishel.
- Waterford Signs Inc. of Delaware, Ohio, is switching its focus to respond to the new demand for first responders
- The business has supplied Delaware County EMS with more than 100 face masks
- Waterford has already taken more than 2,500 orders across Ohio over the last week
“So Jeff came down, we talked about what he needed, and I said you know, I think I can do that, I think I can make these, and so how about I design a prototype and if you come tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock, I'll have it ready for you,” said
Fishel agreed to the design, and Moore brought in more workers to help produce 130 full-face shields for Delaware County ambulance workers.
“The mask you know, is going to help filter the virus out of the air, and then the shield will help protect the provider's eyes from any splash or droplet. He is providing us a low cost, reusable, personal protective equipment that could potentially be the difference between life or death for our crews,” said Delaware County EMS Director, Jeff Fishel.
Longtime Waterford Sign Art Director Scott Hall explains what went into making the eight-part protective face shield.
“Basically we're using a flexible polystyrene for the main head wrap part, also is a reinforcement for the front here. There's a little bit of a gap in the space, when we add the rivets to the side with the foam pad. So, that will help keep it away from your face mask. And for the back part, you just wrap it around,” said Hall.
Waterford Signs has orders for 2,600 units throughout Ohio, and is even in talks with EMS in Boston, Massachusetts. And although it’s been labor-intensive and overwhelming task for their staff, help is soon on the way.
“I think we should be able to get 400 to 500 units a day, we're hoping. My brother has a company in Worthington, it's a non-profit called Super Games. He has a dozen full- time staff. What I think is going to happen, starting in the next couple days, is we're going to open up a second location,” said Moore.
But for Moore, it's not about the added business. It’s all about doing his part in this time of great need.
“We're concerned about protecting our medical professionals. So that's our top priority, but if somebody calls and says my cousin is a doctor and they can't get these, can you send me five, we're sending them five. And let's do all we can to help our medical professionals and protect our country,” said Moore.
For more information about Waterford Signs or for directors on how to create the face mask, check out the company’s website.