Belle Dinning is an emergency medical technician for the Oak Bluffs fire department. She also works part-time as an EMT in Tisbury and part-time at the hospital.

Ms. Dinning said that when emergency medical crews go out on calls, for the safety of the team they treat it as if everyone has Covid-19 until proven otherwise. EMTs are dressed in full protective gear, and if anyone is experiencing respiratory symptoms, they dress in a full hazmat suit with “goggles, glasses, masks, the whole deal.”

“It’s pretty intense,” she said. “It’s crazy, nothing is normal anymore. Our bosses are trying to keep up with the gear for as long as we can. They’ve been doing a really good job of trying to keep us safe and keeping us informed which is awesome.”

While crews are going the extra mile to maintain their safety, there is still the daunting reality of the current situation.

“I think we’re all scared, especially those of us with big families and kids. Luckily, I live by myself but I’m not able to see my family anymore and that’s tough.

Although she is unable to see her family, Ms. Dinning has a four-legged companion at home by the name of Basso, a border collie/Pomeranian/husky mix.

“I don’t know if I could do it without my dog,” she said. “We’ve done so many trails recently it’s been great. For him, this is the best thing that’s ever happened. My days off are few and far between now with all the hats I have to put on, but it’s great, we’ve explored more of the Vineyard than I think I have in my entire life. We use the Landbank trail app and we’ll go for 5 or 10 miles. I can’t stay in the house, I’m one of those people that has to keep moving.”

—Aaron Wilson