The Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) program is designed to help communities prepare for effective disaster response through training and planning. CERT is a positive and realistic approach to emergency and disaster situations where citizens will be initially on their own and their actions can make a difference. With training and information, individual and community groups can be prepared to serve as a crucial resource capable of performing many of the emergency functions needed in the immediate post-disaster period. Through training, citizens can manage utilities and put out small fires; provide first aid and basic medical aid; search for and rescue victims safely; and organize themselves and spontaneous volunteers to be effective.
CERT Training Course
The CERT training course is delivered in the community by a team of first responders who have the requisite knowledge and skills to instruct the sessions.
CERT training consists of the following classes:
- DISASTER PREPAREDNESS: Instructs team members how to prepare themselves and their community for the various types of hazards that may occur.
- FIRE SUPPRESSION: Covers fire chemistry, fire hazards, and fire suppression strategies.
- MEDICAL OPERATIONS PART I: Participants practice diagnosing and treating airway obstructions, bleeding, and shock by using simple triage and rapid treatment techniques.
- MEDICAL OPERATIONS, PART II: Covers evaluating patients, establishing a medical treatment area, and performing basic first aid.
- LIGHT SEARCH AND RESCUE: Participants learn light search and rescue planning, techniques, and rescuer safety.
- TEAM ORGANIZATION AND DISASTER PSYCHOLOGY: Addresses CERT organization and management principles necessary for a CERT to operate successfully, and covers signs and symptoms that might be experienced by the disaster victim and worker.
- TERRORISM AND HOMELAND DEFENSE: Do’s and don’ts during a terrorist act and homeland defense tips.
- COURSE REVIEW AND DISASTER SIMULATION: Participants review the course and practice the skills that they have learned during the previous seven sessions in a disaster simulation.
For more information about CERT, visit the Citizen Corps CERT Web site