Plano Fire-Rescue has recently received a number of donations that will help protect first responders from the novel coronavirus.

Plano Fire Capt. Peggy Harrell said that over the past two weeks area groups, businesses and citizens have donated items ranging from frozen meat to medical supplies. On March 31, the North Texas Collin County Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce donated 4,000 surgical masks and 101 N95 masks.

“That is just a huge donation,” Harrell said.

Harrell said the department also received some N95 masks from Christ United Methodist Church, which sourced from its own disaster-response supplies.

Deputy Chief Matt Higginbotham said these donations are critical in a time when masks are hard to come by.

“We're having a hard time finding those and the hand sanitizer,” Higginbotham said. “We're using a lot of hand sanitizer right now, too.”

Harrell said the department is supposed to receive a donation of hundreds of gallons of hand sanitizer later this week from Carrollton-based BuzzBallz LLC. The business recently switched from making cocktails to making hand sanitizer for health care facilities, municipalities and retail establishments, according to a press release.

The department has also received food donations from the public and private sectors, Harrell said.

“A citizen brought frozen pork shoulder to one of our stations,” he said.

Stryve Biltong Snacks also donated 24 boxes of the company’s air-dried meat snacks on March 31, Harrell said.

“Even when there's not a pandemic, our citizens are the most kind and generous people to us anyway,” he said. “So that during this crazy time they're thinking of us is not a surprise but so appreciated.”