Community Emergency Response Team
What Is CERT?Following a major disaster, first responders who provide fire and medical services will not be able to meet the demand for these services. Factors as number of victims, communication failures, and road blockages will prevent people from accessing emergency services they have come to expect at a moment's notice through 911. People will have to rely on each other for help in order to meet their immediate life saving and life sustaining needs.
CERT is a training program that prepares you to help yourself, your family, and your neighbors in the event of a disaster. During an incident, emergency service personnel may not be able to reach everyone right away. By getting trained in CERT, you will have the skills to help emergency responders save lives and protect property.
As a member of a CERT team, you can respond to disasters, participate in drills and exercises, and take additional training. CERT teams are known and trusted resources to emergency responders and their communities.
What CERT Teams Do in an Emergency?
Under the direction of local emergency responders, CERT teams help provide critical support by giving immediate assistance to victims, providing damage assessment information, and organizing other volunteers at a disaster site. Volunteers trained in CERT also offer a potential workforce for performing duties such as shelter support, crowd control, and evacuation. The role of a CERT volunteer is to help others until trained emergency personnel arrive.
In addition to supporting emergency responders during a disaster, the CERT program builds strong working relationships between emergency responders and the people they serve. CERT teams also help the community year-round with local emergency plans, neighborhood exercises, preparedness outreach, fire safety education and workplace safety. In 95% of all emergencies, a victim or bystander provides the first immediate assistance on the scene. Would you know what to do?
It Starts With You
For residents interested in taking an active role in hometown preparedness, Cedar Hill conducts CERT training approximately two times a year. Courses are delivered locally by Fire and Police personnel and a team of first responders who have the requisite knowledge and skills to instruct the sessions. All are certified in training techniques recommended by the Texas Department of Public Safety, Division of Emergency Management, the Emergency Management Institute and the National Fire Academy.
Cedar Hill CERT meets at 7 p.m. on the third Thursday of each month at the Cedar Hill Fire Station #1, 1212 W. Belt Line Rd. For information on how you can become involved in making our community safer, stronger, and better prepared call the Cedar Hill Fire Department at 972.291.1011, contact Cedar Hill CERT Coordinators.
CERT is an integral part of the Citizen Corps, a grass-roots movement supported by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), to inspire and train people to take action and get involved. To learn more about CERT and other Citizen Corps programs in your area, visit their website.