In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and with real concern going out to health care workers and first responders, one hockey equipment manufacturer is stepping forward.
According to a report by ESPN, while the company sees a major slowdown and since helmets and skates aren’t in great demand while no one plays hockey, during a global “pause”, Bauer figured they could use their resources in the medical field. In an attempt to aid those who need it most, the company is set to modify its product line, moving toward the creation of protective visors for doctors, nurses and first responders.
This new line of protective gear will be produced out of two facilities: the company’s innovation centre in Blainville, Quebece and its facility in Liverpool, New York. Bauer has said these visors should be delivered to hospitals as soon as next week and their first run will see more than 100,000 units shipped across Canada, according to Bauer CEO Ed Kinnaly.
Kinnaly added that they’ve been sending out feelers to see if there was interest and Bauer’s vice-president of product innovation, Dan Bourgeois, said he’s received tons of favorable responses from Montreal police, firefighters and hospitals. In the United States, the word isn’t really out yet, but once it is, this could be of great help.
Those that wear these protective shields will still wear their regular medical masks, these simply go over top give total protection to the entire head and face area.
The company does not expect to make any profit on the new endeavor but the added benefit is that Bauer can keep employing staff, who in other circumstances would be out of work with the shutdowns. “That’s the ancillary benefit to it,” Kinnaly said. “We can keep some people employed to work on these.”
“We say we’re a protective company.… Then why aren’t we starting to [make] protection for our doctors, nurses, hospitals, and their needs?” said Bourgeois, adding the company will try to make 2,000 units daily. Once they realized this was something they could do, the process of “being greenlit, to securing the funding, to finding the right model — was completed in four working days.”
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