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Hampton businesses stepping up to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus

As the coronavirus crisis continues, businesses are rising to the challenge and coming up with solutions. That includes a couple of Hampton businesses.

HAMPTON, Va. — There’s a shortage of supplies across the country, and the need is constantly growing.

Kerry Chou has been searching for hand sanitizer for weeks.

“I looked around at stores and have not been able to find it,” Chou said.

Several businesses are adding to what they already do to make those supplies that are running low because of the coronavirus pandemic, including The Vanguard Brewpub and Distillery in Hampton.

Right now, you can only get food to go but they’re also selling hand sanitizer.

President Randy Thomas said he’s already donated batches to places like the Hampton VA and Portsmouth Naval Hospital. On Monday, several people stopped by to buy a bottle or two.

“It feels good, we would like to do anything to help,” Thomas said. “As word got out it became a steady pace of people.”

If you want to inquire for bulk sanitizer, email The Vanguard at info@theVanguard757.com.

Not just sanitizer, but there’s also a need for masks. Not too far from The Vanguard is Threat Tec, LLC, a veteran-owned small business defense contractor. They’re shifting resources to provide address the shortage.

President and CEO Jim Crawford said they’ve made about 50 or so 3D masks since last week. They’re going to health care professionals all over. Crawford says places like Sentra Norfolk General even reached out.

“We're community members too, we have families in this area, we want to take care of them and the many health care workers,” Crawford said. “We want to find a way to get in the fight and help solve problems.”

Crawford said they’ll start shifting to face shields. He added that if you would like to donate you can do so here. Any additional funds that are left after the product is purchased for the PPE will go towards continuing to develop solutions for healthcare professionals.

Threat Tec is looking for local partners in Illinois, Virginia, Louisiana, Maryland, and Kansas to print masks at home. The printed materials would then be assembled at a Threat Tec location and distributed to those on the front lines of COVID-19.

If someone with a 3D printer does not feel comfortable with running it at home, the printer can be dropped at a Threat Tec location, and an employee will run the machine, and return it once the COVID-19 crisis is over.

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