It was a bit of a mob scene inside the Mastick Senior Center in Alameda as masks were handed out, which have become hard to come by as the unhealthy air quality continues to linger over the Bay Area.
Those masks were donated by a local businessman.
Several thousand N95 respirator masks were headed out to the Island of Alameda, including at the senior center.
There was a big demand for them.
The receptionist had to tell people that they’d run out at about 12 p.m., but then their third shipment of the day came through and there were many in line to grab them up for themselves and their family members.
“I didn’t expect this,” Danette Williams said. “I stopped in Oakland to get it. Couldn’t get any and raced over here, not expect you to see this, and I suffer from asthma. I’m a nurse. I understand it’s crazy for people but, ‘Oh my gosh.’ It’s very stressful.”
The owner of western gravel and roofing supply first gave a thousand masks to the City of Alameda after the municipality tried to procure their own and failed.
“It’s very hard to get,” Alameda spokesman Sarah Henry said. “You can’t just walk into a shop and purchase them because they’re in such high demand, so we are again incredibly fortunate to not only be able to get donation(s), then the same person was able to secure us a couple extra thousand as well so we just feel very fortunate.”
Those residents who got their hands on the masks felt relief once they had them in their possession.
The City of Alameda handed out roughly 4,500 of these masks on Friday.
The fire department placed another order, but they’re hoping to arrive on Saturday.
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