Pennington County installs HVAC filters to deactivate COVID-19

Local News

RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — Pennington County is providing cleaner air for all of it’s buildings thanks to a new HVAC filtration system. The device is able to deactivate the coronavirus in minutes.

This new filtration device uses positive and negative ions to deactivate pathogens in the air, like the COVID-19 virus.

“After ten minutes of exposure, the ions deactivate the COVID-19 by 84 percent. Then, after a half-hour of exposure, it deactivates them by 99.4 percent,” Dave Eccleston, Ast. Director for Pennington County Buildings and Grounds, said.

The HVAC filters are located in the heating and cooling system. Here in the Care Campus, there are five HVAC filters. And in all of the Pennington County buildings, there are a total of 61.

That includes buildings like, the courthouse, the public safety building, and the county jail.

“If we can help keep contamination from in the buildings, we can keep people healthier and keep them coming to work,” Eccleston said.

David Oster works in the Care Campus. He says the number one priority is to keep staff and clients safe.

“We have a lot of people that use our facility and just knowing that the air is being cleaned in between the people that come in, that I think is a reassurance to the staff and helps to make the area safer for everybody that uses the facility,” David Oster, Care Campus Housing DIrector, said.

The HVAC filters cost about $550,000. They are paid for by the Federal COVID Relief Fund.

“I think it’s a great investment, it’ll protect everybody using the county facilities, it will help us with the various viruses that get spread through the air systems so I think it is a good investment,” Oster said.

The Assistant Director for Pennington County Buildings and Grounds says you can also get the HVAC filters in your homes.

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