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Chartered engineer prints 3D face shields for key workers

PUBLISHED: 06:30 18 April 2020

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike Ford

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike Ford

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A chartered engineer is printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike FordMike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike Ford

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been busy making face shields for NHS staff and key workers in the town and surrounding areas.

The 61-year-old chartered engineer, who works in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) outreach, decided to put his 3D printers to good use after schools and colleges closed.

Mr Ford said: “I do a lot of work in robotics and 3D printing, so I happen to have 3D printers in my home offices.

“When schools and colleges shut up shop it was the case of, well what to do now?

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike FordMike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike Ford

“Nationally people have been diverting resources and making personal protective equipment (PPE) equipment and ventilators, so I was keen to do my little bit in the area in which I live.

“I looked up a few designs on the web and then fit it to the machine and got making.

“I started on Monday, March 30 and have been printing ever since.”

Mr Ford has made 628 units in total and has been donating them to those in need in the local area.

Mike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike FordMike Ford from Downham Market has been printing 3D face shields for key workers in his community. Picture: Mike Ford

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He said: “They’ve been picked up by key workers and NHS staff at the QEH.

“I’m now concentrating on the care sector in our area.

“I’ve had people knocking on my door, collecting them for doctor surgeries, pharmacies and food factory operators.

“It’s for everybody and it’s an element of providing protection and preventing infection, while taking the load off the NHS.”

He added that he was prompted to think more seriously about the face shields as his wife works at the checkouts at Morrisons and wanted to give her and her colleagues protection from the virus.

Mr Ford said: “I can’t sit around with all this resource available. It was the spirit of let’s get on and make some of these masks for them. I can’t seem to make enough of them.

“As long as there’s demand and the stuff I need to make them, I’ll keep doing it.

“I’m keen to help anybody and any key worker who wants a face shield.”

You can contact Mr Ford on mike.ford58@googlemail.com

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