A photo of the 3D-printed mask straps local millwright Devin Baer has made for workers at Kitimat General Hospital. (Contributed photo)

Kitimat millwright creates 3D-printed mask straps for hospital workers

Devin Baer has 3D printed mask straps and head supports for Kitimat General Hospital workers

It’s an idea workers at Kitimat General Hospital (KGH) are going to be all ears for.

A local millwright is using his 3D printer to make mask straps that protect healthcare professionals’ ears by shifting tension from behind them to the back of the head.

Devin Baer said he first got the idea when his wife and sister, who both work at KGH, mentioned to him the masks they were using in response to COVID-19 were causing pressure aches over the course of a full shift.

READ MORE: N95 masks on the way for Canada after 3M reaches deal with White House

Baer, who said he has always liked tinkering with 3D printers and improving on designs, felt obligated to see what he could do about improving the straps.

“We all need to help each other out and do what we can, and this was something that I could do to help,” said Baer, who also developed head supports to attach to a number of face shields which have been donated to the hospital.

“I’m so proud of Devin,” said Baer’s wife Ashlee, who works in the KGH lab. “He’s very modest about what he does, but hopefully he knows what a huge, positive difference he has made to all of us working to serve our community during this pandemic.”

Baer’s employer ServcoCanada is also stepping up to fulfill the other side of the medical equation, donating 10,000 N95 masks to KGH.

To that point, Baer said it’s important during the pandemic for locals to look after one another in any way they can.

“I just like improving the design of products – that’s my jam,” says Baer. “But helping out can just be asking a neighbour if you can pick up some groceries for them. We all need to do what we can.”

Meanwhile, Millwrights Local 2736 business manager Miro Maras said he is impressed by both Baer and ServcoCanada. “On behalf of the entire union, we are proud of Devin’s ingenuity and that he has improved working conditions for our frontline health care workers,” said Maras. “We also appreciate the generosity of ServcoCanada stepping up in donating masks. These generous acts are what carries us through these times.”

N95 masks have become a contentious topic during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the U.S. previously banning exports to Canada in an apparent effort to consolidate its own supplies. The two countries have since come to a deal which will allow for Canada to continue to receive the masks from their American factories. Despite this, a number of Canadian officials including B.C.’s provincial health officer Bonnie Henry have said over past weeks hospitals will begin to use community-donated cloth masks in response to PPE shortages across the country.



trevor.hewitt@interior-news.com
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Fall Fair group and Barriere Lions Club teaming up for ‘Pancakes & Cowboy Church’

Due to COVID-19 social distancing regulations numerous community events have had to… Continue reading

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Upper Clearwater naturalist helps name national lichen

The votes are in for Canada’s proposed national lichen and the Star-tipped… Continue reading

District of Barriere Utilities Manager reports to council on Barriere wells

District of Barriere Utilities Manager Ian Crosson presented a verbal report during… Continue reading

B.C. records no new COVID-19 deaths for the first time in weeks

Good news comes despite 11 new test-positive cases in B.C. in the past 24 hours

BC Corrections to expand list of eligible offenders for early release during pandemic

Non-violent offenders are being considered for early release through risk assessment process

Fraser Valley driver featured on ‘Highway Thru Hell’ TV show dies

Monkhouse died Sunday night of a heartattack, Jamie Davis towing confirmed

B.C. visitor centres get help with COVID-19 prevention measures

Destination B.C. gearing up for local, in-province tourism

36 soldiers test positive for COVID-19 after working in Ontario, Quebec care homes

Nearly 1,700 military members are working in long-term care homes overwhelmed by COVID-19

B.C. poison control sees spike in adults, children accidentally ingesting hand sanitizer

Hand sanitizer sales and usage have gone up sharply amid COVID-19 pandemic

B.C. man with Alberta plates gets car keyed and aggressive note

Some out-of-province people are finding hostile reception due to COVID-19 worries

Most Read