OVERLAND PARK, Kan. — Chances are you or someone you know has had to change jobs during the pandemic. 41 Action News recently found a man who lost his last job — but gained a new one — because of COVID-19.
Before the pandemic, Craig Boyle worked for an indoor amusement park in Johnson County. Places like those were some of the first to close up shop in March.
"And then as soon as the shutdown happened that day, I was laid off,” Boyle said. “And it was actually my birthday so there was like a kind of a bad feeling."
He needed a new gig. And the inspiration came from one of his old job responsibilities.
"It kind of clicked in my head, and I was like, ‘You know what, this is something I'm trained in," Boyle said. "I'm knowledgeable of the products.’"
Boyle had already used fogging machines to clean the indoor park where he worked. He knew what he needed and where to get it, so he launched his own fogging business. It was originally called something else, but then a customer said "What Duh Fog" as a joke, and it stuck.
The fogging process includes a layer of disinfectant and then a microbial layer, which keeps killing the virus for weeks.
"So we worked really close with the EPA in finding our products,” Boyle said. “So we found something that's food-safe, EPA-registered, yet FDA-approved as also kid-safe and pet-safe."
That kid-safe element interested Bringing Therapy Home, which provides therapy services for children at its two locations, including one in Overland Park. The owner says her decision to bring in foggers has been a popular one.
"A lot of our therapists also work in school districts, they work in hospitals, they work in other therapy centers, in addition to here,” Bringing Therapy Home owner Marena Mitchell said. “And they were already relieved that we're putting this in place in addition to the other safety protocols that we have."
The fog is not meant to replace the need for masks by employees and customers.
"It's not going to prevent person-to-person,” Boyle said. “We're not spraying people, we're spraying surfaces."
The question for What Duh Fog moving forward is if it can survive after the pandemic. Boyle says he doesn't see the need fading away anytime soon.
"It makes their employees feel safe,” Boyle said. "So I think post-pandemic, a lot of businesses are going to have something like this in place."
Boyle's business is growing, too. His brothers have already started their own franchises in other states, and he's preparing to hire more staff here in Kansas City.
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