San Carlos Art and Wine Festival Booth

Our annual event at the wonderful San Carlos Art and Wine Faire is coming up.

Redwood City/San Carlos CERT will have a booth set up on Saturday and Sunday.  This is a fun event, a great way to share information with the community about CERT, Preparedness and Fire Prevention.  In past years we have had lots of fun, sharing info and also meeting our fellow CERTs.  If you would like to assist with Set-up, Staffing or Take-down, please respond with the hours you are available to volunteer. (Event Hours are 8am to 5pm both Saturday and Sunday).

What: San Carlos Art and Wine Festival Booth
When: Saturday & Sunday, October 10&11, 2015
Time: 8am to 5pm
Where:  Laurel Street, San Carlos

RSVP by: Wednesday, October 7, 2015 to Christy Adonis at

If you would like to assist at this event, it would be great to have your help.  Limited details are listed above, with full details (meeting location/briefing time etc.) being sent later to those who will be assisting.

Red Cross Smoke Alarm Installations

Did you attend the Red Cross Home Fire Preparedness training ???

Menlo Park Fire District and American Red Cross are partnering to install free smoke alarms in North Fair Oaks (Menlo Park) and educate residents about the importance of emergency preparedness and fire safety.  Date of the event is Oct 17, 2015.  More details on the Redwood City CERT Activities Page.Red_Cross_Hands_Out_Smoke_Alarms_2560300000_13126817_ver1.0_640_480

Crush Syndrome and Trauma Care Training

When:  Wednesday, October 14, 2015 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Where:  Station 1, 300 Middlefield Road Menlo Park CA 94025
Presenter:  Jon Boucher Firefighter/Paramedic Santa Clara Fire Department

In the wake of a disaster, CERT members will be faced with a large number of patients with traumatic injuries.  Providing the proper care in a timely manner is critical to the survival of injured victims.  This class covers 3 important areas of trauma care to improve your knowledge and skills.  The subjects include:

  • Crush Syndrome and its impact on CERT response
  • Bleeding Control and Tourniquet use
  • Chest Trauma

CERT Bag Group Order

I happened to see this CERT cinch bag online and was going to place an order, but then wanted to see if any local CERTs were interested in adding to the order.   It may come in handy as an overflow bag if your backpack is getting full, or as a backpack alternative for carrying to public CERT events.  It looks like it would be around $11 each after shipping costs.  I plan on placing my order on 10/7/15 so please send a note me:
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PG&E Gas and Electric Hazards Reference Guide

At our August meeting PG&E was kind enough to distribute copies of their Gas & Electrics Hazards Guide for CERT’s.  For folks who have not recived this previously, it is available online here and a electronic copy has been added to the “CERT Links” section on the right.

Emergency Response Guidebook

During our recent PG&E training sessions (both Belmont and Redwood City/San Carlos), a PG&E First Responder Guide for CERT was distributed.   Inside that guide, there was information on a Emergency Response Guidebook for first responders.  This is all strictly informational purposes since we’re all trained to back away from these signs, but it is available as a free app and PDF document.  I have also added a link in the “CERT Links” area to the right.
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New SMC Alert System Is Live

The County of San Mateo Office of Emergency Services (OES) is proud to announce the launch of the new and improved emergency notification system, SMC Alert. During National Preparedness Month, we are reminded the importance of keeping the public informed during emergencies.banner
The San Mateo County (OES) is opening registration to the new SMC Alert System at  Folks will receive an additional email with details and a link to update your existing profile or you may create a new account at  For folks with existing accounts, your contact information from your former SMC Alert account was transferred to the new Everbridge system with the exception of your username and password.

You will be required to set up a new username & password to access your account.  This will also give you an opportunity to update your contact information such as a new address, email or updated phone numbers.
>>To update your account information and create your username and password, please click this link.

The new SMC Alert System is live and available to the public. A media release has been put out by OES and they have had 1300 new signups in the first 2 hours. Capt Halleran will making sure the right folks are all in the Belmont CERT group, and you might be getting a test alert to confirm in the coming days.

The new and improved system features of SMC Alert include:
>Customizable alerts (ie: emergencies, road closures)
>Geo-coded technology
>Our new mapping technology allows us to focus the property notifications to smaller neighborhoods in case of emergency.

2015 Urban Shield

I volunteered for this year’s Urban Shield exercise (just Saturday), my second year doing so.  Like last year, the area I was assigned to was Urban Search & Rescue.  This year the host department was San Jose FD and I spent my 13 hour shift at a bus crash simulation located at the VTA bus yard.  As with last year, there was confusion at the command post about who was going where.  I was told to report to a trench exercise, followed the map directions given me and wound up at the bus crash site!  I ended up being an observer for most of the day, with a few turns at being a bus crash victim.

The goal of the exercise was to extricate a victim trapped under a car that was crushed by a city bus.  Particpating fire departments worked in pairs to gain experience working as teams, with four teams cycling thru the exercise.  Not surprisingly, each team came up with a different strategy for lifting the vehicles off the victim.  Teams took anywhere between 50 and 80 minutes to get the victim clear.  There was little CERT participation at this location, just myself and Steve Traynor from Redwood City.  Quite a few young folks from Alameda County FD reserve were on hand, including a few non-CERT volunteers.  Other than being a victim, there wasn’t much of a role for the volunteers to do other than observe.
2015 Urban Shield, Santa Clara FD/ Napa FD,

2015 Urban Shield, Santa Clara FD,
It was a great refresher on cribbing techniques and to see the various tools/aids being employed by the various teams.  Three teams used airbags to lift the bus while one used hydraulic struts to accomplish the task.  Only one team used a small camera that they inserted into the car to check for additional victims while another team was the only one to use a floor jack to lift the car once the bus was raised.

All in all, it was a good experience.  A long day but at least the weather had cooled off significantly.   A hearty bag lunch is provided along with all the water/Gatorade you can consume, along with a t-shirt.  A little annoyed that the command post had already run out of the Urban Shield souvenir coins by 0700!  Will most likely sign up again for next year.

As always, lots of photos on our CERT Photo Album for everyone to review.

CERT Volunteers Needed for NDNU Activity

Notre Dame de Namur University (NDNU), is holding a campus event on Thursday, October 15th for this year’s Great Shakeout. The first portion is an earthquake (drop, cover & hold) drill at 10:15AM, which is the standard participation event for the Great Shakeout.

The second portion is a Disaster Preparedness Fair from 11:30AM – 1:30PM (2hrs). They have asked for our CERT trailer to be on display and some CERT volunteers to participate. Since this is occurring during “lunch time” they are talking about having food.

Capt Haleran will have more information at next week’s CERT meeting, but  wanted to give everyone a “heads-up” and see what kind of CERT availability we had for this since it’s on a weekday.

CERT Sightings, Near and Far

Thanks to Lisa B. for spotting this CERT trailer on a trip to Hawaii.
I was a little closer to home at the Millbrae Art & Wine Festival where our fellow CERTs had a booth.Millbrae CERT,

Millbrae CERT,