CERT Emergency Response

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Our Mission:
The Amherst Community Emergency Response Team – CERT – is made up of volunteers who are trained and equipped to respond to town-wide Mass Casualty Incidents (MCI’s). Disasters such as tornado, hurricane, flood, major snow and ice storms, wide spread power outages, explosions, and the aftermath of terrorist attacks. Because MCI’s result in road blockages, communications outages and many more victims than rescuers, our professional responders will be understandably overwhelmed. This is when CERT is activated to immediately assist those who are injured, by delivering life sustaining medical treatment until the professionals arrive.

CERT members are trained in MCI triage, emergency medical treatment, evacuation from damaged structures, making disaster scenes safe by identifying and isolating hazards, providing injury and damage assessment to town authorities and more. CERT teams are known and trusted resources to emergency responders and to their communities.

 

During non-disaster times, CERT members work to raise the level of self-preparedness for all our citizens. CERT also provides a trained work force for town events like firework displays, parades, road races and festivals, making our community a safer place to live and work.

CERT programs, part of the Department of Homeland Security, are administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Your fellow Amherst citizens join because they want to help their families, neighbors and their community in times of disaster and to better prepare for hazards that threaten us. 

We have graduated 55 members from our first three training classes. Our next training class is not presently scheduled.. If you are interested in our next training class, please submit an application now on line. Classes are held at the Umass Police Station on East Pleasant St in their Conference Room - from 6:30pm to 9:00pm.

SUBMIT an APPLICATION TO RESERVE A SEAT IN OUR NEXT CLASS
or contact our Program Manager, Michael Williamson at cert@amherstma.gov

CERT TRAINING -- Training Schedule - 7 class meetings, 1 each week, followed by a Course Review week 8 and a Simulated Disaster Drill and Graduation/Certification week 9. 

Classes are 2 1/2 hours each evening from 6:30pm to 9:00pm. Each class must be attended for certification. Make up classes possible, schedules permitting.




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CERT Overview
CERT members come from neighborhood, workplace, or other community organizations. Members join because they want to learn how to better prepare for hazards that threaten their homes and communities. They want to protect their families, themselves, and their communities.
The CERT Program was started by FEMA in 1985, training community members in California for earthquake response operations. Under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the CERT Program has grown to cover all types of disasters in communities around the country.

As a CERT member, you will become an active participant in learning about hazards and preparing for them. After training, you may be called upon to support emergency services following a disaster.

So far 55 members have been trained and graduated and are certified for deployment!!
Join our Team!!!

Suggested On-Line Course:
Incident Command Introduction IS-100
http://training.fema.gov/EMIWeb/IS/courseOverview.aspx?code=is-100.b

General Training Topics:
The CERT Basic  training consists of the following:  DISASTER PREPAREDNESS, DISASTER FIRE SUPPRESSION/FIRE SAFETY, DISASTER MEDICAL OPERATIONS PART I, DISASTER MEDICAL OPERATIONS, PART II, URBAN SEARCH AND RESCUE OPERATIONS, DISASTER PSYCHOLOGY, POWER LINE AND TREE SAFETY, INCIDENT COMMAND SYSTEM/TEAM ORGANIZATION, IDENTIFYING TERRORIST ACTIVITY, COURSE REVIEW, DISASTER SIMULATION DRILL AND GRADUATION.

Additional advanced training workshops are also provided throughout the year in areas such as CPR/AED, Radio Communications, Hands on Bandaging and Triage for Mass Casualty Incidents, Wilderness Rescue, Team Management, Disaster Animal Rescue and Advanced Shelter Operations.

During each session participants will be provided with a Participant Training Manual along with safety equipment (gloves, goggles, mask) and disaster supplies (bandages, flashlight, dressings) which will be used as needed during the sessions. A CERT equipment back pack with a vest and radio is available for purchase before the final drill to all who complete the full training course. Cost is $95. A limited supply of CERT equipment backpacks are on hand for those who can't afford to purchase their own. 

Donations.
Your Amherst CERT program is a not for profit corporation in the state of MA and has federal 501C3 status. Donations may be given directly to  Amherst-CERT, POB 654, Amherst, MA 01004. Your donations  will be used to provide equipment, medical supplies and training materials for the team.

Who should take CERT Training?
  • Anyone over the age of 18
  • Interested Teens 14 to 17 (please submit your age when applying)
  • People interested in taking an active role in hometown preparedness
  • Neighborhood watch groups
  • Senior Citizens
  • Community leaders
  • Parents
  • Communities of faith
  • Teachers and Administrators
  • Volunteers for other programs like MRC and Red Cross
  • Business owners and their employees
  • Members of clubs and civic organizations
  • Now training Umass ROTC cadets

Teen Community Emergency Response Team

Are You Ready To...
  • Learn about the hazards in your area?
  • Help others in the event of a disaster?
  • Be a leader in your school, scouting program and community?
Teen CERT members answer, "Yes!" and here is why: Teen CERT training teaches you readiness and response skills. Hands-on practice and realistic exercises prepare you for the unexpected in your community. Newly learned leadership skills empower you to safely respond to an emergency and assist victims without endangering yourself or others. You'll be equipped with skills that last a lifetime.