History of CERT
The concept of CERT began in 1985 following a major earthquake in Mexico City in which over 100 untrained volunteers lost their lives trying to rescue their neighbors. As a result, the Los Angeles Fire Department saw the need to train and prepare citizens to safely respond after a disaster. The idea spread to other departments across the country, and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) adopted the program as a national model for every community. Former President Bush endorsed CERT training as part of the Citizen Corps Program.
La Verne’s CERT Program
In August 2016, the City of La Verne Fire Department initiated the La Verne CERT Program, and the first training classes began in early 2017. To date, we have trained over 170 residents of La Verne and neighboring communities who will play a significant role in emergency response immediately after a disaster until the professional responders can arrive. In addition to assisting the City during times of crisis, active team members also provide support at community events. CERT team membership is not required for enrollment in the free CERT training course. Read more about La Verne CERT here.
Neighbors Helping Neighbors
Following a major disaster, police, fire, and other emergency resources may not be able to immediately respond to those in need. In such crisis, it will be families assisting families, neighbors assisting neighbors and co-workers assisting co-workers until emergency response personnel can arrive. Being trained on how to be prepared to respond in an emergency situation in your own community, at work, or on vacation is one of the most important things you can to do assist during an emergency.
The CERT program helps train residents to be better prepared to respond to emergency situations. When emergencies happen, CERT members can give critical support to first responders, provide immediate assistance to victims, and organize spontaneous volunteers at a disaster site. CERT members can also help with non-emergency projects that help improve the safety of the community.
Watch this CERT informational video for more information.