Cocoa firefighters distribute 5,000 free take-home COVID tests

Cocoa residents drive through two giveaway locations Thursday

COCOA, Fla. – With 5,000 COVID-19 take-home tests, there was enough for hundreds of drivers moving through two locations in Cocoa on Thursday.

‘’We had more than 50 cars lined up, so we went ahead and opened early,’’ Cocoa Fire Chief Jonathan Lamm said.

Firefighters constantly handed out free tests and kept the lines moving.

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Chief Lamm joined the effort at Old Fire Station 3 on Michigan Avenue.

‘’Our community is really in a hyper-sensitive state right now of wanting to either be tested or get tested at home so just seeing the number of people that have come out, really shows you what the demand is for these kits,’’ the fire chief said.

For Nathashia Brown, she said taking a test was for her family.

‘’I’m looking out for their safety,’’ Brown said.

Expectant mother Brittany Quillen gave the same reason.

‘’I’ve had a few family members have it, but I haven’t personally myself. But I’m pregnant, so I’m trying to stay safe as possible,’’ Quillen said.

Each box has two tests and when they’re not handing them out, Cocoa firefighters said they continue to respond to more service calls for COVID patients.

‘’I’m just getting over COVID and I’ve got somebody at home that’s showing symptoms,’’ Gary Weeks said after picking up tests.

Depending on availability, Chief Lamm said the city hopes to distribute more free tests at future events.

About the Author:

James joined News 6 in March 2016 as the Brevard County Reporter. His arrival was the realization of a three-year effort to return to the state where his career began. James is from Pittsburgh, PA and graduated from Penn State in 2009 with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.