Jefferson county jail working hard to keep jail COVID-19 free

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JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ark. — At this point no cases of COVID-19 have been reported out of the Jefferson County Jail, and they want to keep it that way.

At the Jefferson County Jail, they’re pulling out all the stops, to keep out a dangerous offender they don’t want behind bars.

“First thing that came to my mind god help us.” said Sheriff Lafayette Woods. “you go into an area where you have upwards of 60 people,”

That’s why they are using a powerful spray that continues to disinfect for days.

“We actually don’t have to do it again for another 2 weeks,” said Sheriff Lafayette Woods “it actually kills them in the air.”

It’s called a UV emitter.

Hidden inside are ultraviolet lights that Woods says treats the air and surfaces.

“It acts as a chemical agent that you don’t really see, it’s air and light.” said Sheriff Lafayette Woods

The jail is now looking to upgrade that, to units installed directly into the HVAC system.

“It would help me sleep at night I guess you could say because it’s more a sense of security.” said Joseph Gorman, jail administrator.

It costs about $20,000, which the sheriff’s office plans to cover from grants.

Arguing it could prevent outbreaks like the one in Cummins where staff and hundreds of inmates tested positive.  

“I can only imagine that its even a much worse nightmare to have it in there to try to maintain because it spreads like wildfire.” said Joseph Gorman, jail administrator. 

 We also asked the state health department if UV light works for disinfecting, we were told it works best for cleaning surfaces.

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