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TBI employee tests positive for COVID-19, prompting delay in firearm background checks

WSMV Nashville logo WSMV Nashville 3/20/2020
Coronavirus COVID-19 © Provided by WSMV Nashville

Coronavirus COVID-19

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has announced one if its employees has tested positive for COVID-19, prompting a delay in state firearm background checks.

The TBI learned Wednesday evening an employee assigned to its headquarters in Nashville tested positive for COVID-19. The employee, who self-reported the diagnosis to the agency, remains in good spirits and is recovering at home.

TBI’s senior management team took all reasonable and recommended measures to ensure the safety of employees and visitors to its headquarters. Actions taken include additional cleaning measures and notifying employees who had contact with the affected employee. In addition, employees assigned to headquarters, including those working for the Tennessee Instant Check System (TICS), who were not already working from home were advised to do so on Thursday.

TICS, the system that provides background checks once a firearm is sold or transferred in Tennessee, experienced a delay in processing transactions Thursday. The delay sparked by limited staff access to TBI facilities as a result of the employee’s positive diagnosis, a large increase in background check requests amid the COVID-19 pandemic, and an approximately one-hour, unplanned outage in the technical connection needed to process the background checks.

TBI processed 14,657 transactions between Thursday, March 12 and Monday, March 16.

The TBI continues to work to adjust employee work schedules in hopes of improving wait times in days to come.

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