CERT Independent Study

“Introduction to Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT), IS-317, is an independent study course that serves as an introduction to CERT for those interested in completing the basic CERT training or as a refresher for current team members. The course includes six modules: CERT Basics, Fire Safety, Hazardous Material and Terrorist Incidents, Disaster Medical Operations, and Search and Rescue, and Course Summary.

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2017 Belmont Fire Dept Toy Drive

Another successful toy drive was held at Fire Station 14 last month and Belmont CERT was there to support the firefighters and hand out refreshments to the residents stopping by to visit Santa.  Thanks to all those that volunteered.  Photos have been uploaded to the CERT Photo Album (thanks Terese!)

SFFD Mass Casualty Transport Buses

At last night’s presentation of the Vigilant Guardian exercise, Cindy spoke of a recently added mass casualty transport capability of SFFD.  The SFFD buses, known as AmbuBus 1 and AmbuBus 2, started with two donated Muni buses.  The interiors were reconfigured and outfitted to care for and transport 12 – 15 stretcher patients and 10 seated patients.  The use of these buses to transport a relatively large number of patients would prevent local ambulance resources from being committed to a single incident, allowing for normal ambulance response to be maintained.

Here are some articles about these buses:
http://www.jems.com/articles/2015/12/san-francisco-mass-casualty-transport-buses-to-medical-fleet.html
https://www.sfmta.com/blog/muni-buses-become-fire-department-life-savers
http://kalw.org/post/disaster-prep-sf-style-giant-ambulances-built-old-muni-buses#stream/0

Add Inexpensive Tarps to Your Kit

I was perusing our local Dollar Tree and found tarps for a dollar!  I picked up some to have with our car kits, my first thought was that it would be good way to avoid laying your bag/gear in the dirt/mud. It’s kinda small and not all that thick but what do you expect for a dollar??  Mind you, I do have full size/strength tarps as part of our home kit.

CERT, tarp,

December Belmont CERT Meeting/Potluck

Our annual custom of a December meeting/potluck event went to a whole new level last night.  Due to the upcoming toy drive, our get together was held at the Belmont EOC in City Hall.  The appetizer-themed event of years past became a full blown meal this year with a delicious ham and lasagna among other dishes.  Thanks to all that brought a dish to share!  Photos have been posted to the CERT Photo Album.

Meeting topics covered included:
> Upcoming Toy Drive with Santa Claus at FS 14
> January CERT class at NDNU- Volunteers welcome
> 2018 County Health Dept Exercise (formerly Silver Dragon) to be held April 26 and will be a search & rescue plus triage scenario
> Disaster Preparedness Day 2018 will be separate from the County Fair and will be held on September 22

Guest presenters were our own Cindy B. & Al D. who recounted their experiences as volunteer victims for the recent Vigilant Guardian exercise held in San Francisco.

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Santa Toy Drive at Fire Station 14

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Another Sandbag Alternative

While writing the previous post on Floodsax, I saw this Quickdams product line on Amazon.  Depending on your personal home/business situation, it may be a better choice.

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Sandless Sandbags Available at Red Cross

I saw these while surfing the web and wanted to bring it to everyone’s attention.  These sandbags are lightweight (1 pound), compact, easy to store, and water activated.  With a ten-year storage life, these bags are vacuum sealed until time of use.  $62/pack of five from Red Cross, $156 pack/five from Amazon.

Link for more information.

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Belmont Sandbag Stations

Sandbag stations are available in Belmont for the wet weather. img_2428

CERT Response to Tubbs Fire

I found this article on Sebastopol CERT response to the Tubbs fire:
“Elsewhere throughout the city, Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members provided extra eyes on the neighborhoods, looking for any floating embers from the fires blowing smoke and ash from north Santa Rosa and the Sonoma Valley, according to CERT member and former mayor Craig Litwin.  “It was rewarding to see people gather together,” Litwin said. “It restored my faith in humanity.”

According to Braga, roughly 300 CERT members were emailed at 3:30 a.m., five hours after the Tubbs fire first broke out. Fifteen minutes later, CERT members began to show up at the fire station, ready to help.  “It was just an incredible response,” Braga said.

CERT filled in the gaps as emergency responders since many members of the volunteer Sebastopol Fire Department crew were called out to fight the fires. According to Braga, over the course of 12 days, 22 Sebastopol firefighters fought for 1,700 hours.”
http://www.sonomawest.com/sonoma_west_times_and_news/news/calm-after-the-firestorm/article_bd9bcd3c-c345-11e7-a265-c3473655cb48.html