Excerpts from Chicago.cbslocal.com:

Businesses across the area are reprogramming their machines to make personal protective equipment (PPE) for first responders police officers, firefighters, EMS workers, and medical professionals. They’re doing what they can to help as COVID-19 eats up resources across the country. .

The machines at Bridgewater Studio are now programed to cut out protective face shields used by emergency personnel and medical professionals. It’s another layer of protection at a time when PPE is in high demand. They hope to make about 6,000 face shields a day. The Cicero Fire Department already ordered about 1,200 of them. Cicero police will also use them.

Tapster Robotics in Oak Park is 3D printing bands that can be used for similar shields. They plan to print about 50 per day, and get them to hospitals or medical professionals who need more equipment.

Cicero’s fire chief said the shields were very affordable. Bridgewater said they’re charging just the manufacturing costs, plus the money needed to keep the lights on and keep their workers’ health insurance.

As for Tapster’s operation, they said the parts will be donated, because their manufacturing cost is very minimal.