Embry Health is cleaning up after a weekend storm destroyed the tents of the Phoenix-area COVID-19 testing sites

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Embry Health was in clean-up mode Sunday morning after storms damaged many of them COVID-19 Test site the night before when strong winds and rain came through.

The mess came as Arizona was dealing with record-breaking COVID-19 cases and Embry Health was conducting one of the state’s largest testing programs.

Raymond Embry, CEO and co-founder of Embry Health TestNOW, tweeted Sunday afternoon, saying: “Last night’s storms in the East Valley were brutal for @EmbryHealth. At least twenty other tents were destroyed. I remember the first major storm that destroyed a site back in August 2020. I figured when we put that back together it would be the last, little did I know…”

He explained that most tents at COVID-19 testing sites throughout the Phoenix area were destroyed and testing was temporarily halted — but has since reopened at regular times.

Running an outdoor operation sometimes means fighting Mother Nature, and that’s exactly what happened as storms rolled through the valley, knocking over trash cans, destroying Embry’s COVID-19 testing tents and sending supplies through the air.

“Every once in a while we have these storms that come through and basically destroy everything, so we’re used to that considering that’s part of the operation of these sites,” Embry said.

This isn’t the first time storms have impacted their operations. In 2020 the monsoon left a similar impact and since then they say they are prepared.

“As of fall 2020, we have a 20,000 square foot warehouse in Tolleson where we store thousands of traffic cones as well as hundreds of tents just for situations like this,” Embry explained. “Embry Health is an emergency business, so naturally we respond to our own emergencies just as well.”

Embry Health was in clean-up mode Sunday morning after storms damaged many of its COVID-19 testing sites the night before as high winds and rain blew through. Photos courtesy of Abby Goude

Arizona COVID-19 Resources, FAQ: azdhs.gov/coronavirus

To protect yourself from possible infection, the CDC recommends:

  • Avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces with a regular household cleaning spray or cloth.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when around others
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the toilet; before the meal; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • Monitor your health daily

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