This past week I was able to attend the Safety Officer training session conducted by Menlo Park CERT. The training was conducted by Steve Taffee (MP CERT) who developed this course when he realized that there was no formal training for this key ICS role. The training revolved around the many hazards that CERT teams may encounter, and the PPE and techniques to mitigate such conditions. This requires ability to size up the big picture, yet recognize the small details that could endanger personnel. The Safety Officer is the only person that can veto the Incident Commander! This training was worthwhile and recommended to all.
Last fall the Belmont CERT team received the new version of the CERT Field Operations Guide (FOG) and now a PDF copy is available to keep on your smartphone or tablet. It is listed in the CERT Links section on the right hand column.
For only two days, folks interested in buying a backup power source can get free solar panels! (normally $90 ea) Readers here know that I’m a fan of Goal Zero and own two of their older model power units and two solar panels. (Link to previous post). Folks can also go to the Foster City Costco today thru Monday and chat with the Goal Zero rep and see their products in person.
Here is the Goal Zero link.
Health Emergency Exercise
Incident Name: Silver Dragon
Time: 7:30am to 1:30pm
Our CERT members have again been invited to participate in the San Mateo County Public Health Silver Dragon Exercise. The purpose of this public health exercise is to enhance public health reediness, preparedness and response to a biological threat. Utilization of CERT members to assist first responders in all aspects of response, allowing CERT members to apply skills, such as setting up an ICP, communications, team building, documentation, team coordination and accountability. More info and sign up information will be sent in coming months.
Saturday April 11, 2015
8:15am to 1:00pm
Redwood City (address and additional details sent to those who RSVP)
Redwood City/San Carlos CERT needs your help… Would you like to be a part of our Skills Day Team, those are the folks that you met during your hands on skills day. Join us and shadow an afternoon of meeting our newest class participants, and learn how you can help at a future class. “Become a Skills Day Assistant” Our next CERT course is available for sign ups at this time, classes begin in March and are listed in the park and recreation guide.
RSVP to mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org?subject=Skills%20Day%20Assistant%20Shadow
When: February 25, 2015 6:30 pm – 9:00 pm
Where: Station 1
300 Middlefield Road
Menlo Park CA 94025
All CERTs should have a basic understanding of the Incident Command System, including the roles of the Incident Commander (overall leader), the Logistic Chief (in charge of materials, supplies, personnel), and the Operations Chief (in charge of getting things done). Larger incidents may have other leadership roles.
One role that is not talked about in enough depth is that of the Safety Officer, person specifically charged with the overall safety of the CERT volunteers. In many cases, the Incident Commander may also serve the role of Safety Officer, but as the size or complexity of an incident increases, a Safety Officer, abbreviated SO, may be warranted. The SO is only person in the Incident Command Structure who has the authority to overrule the decisions of the Incident Commander! Safety is always first!
Most training materials about the role of the Safety Officer are aimed at professional responders such as fire fighters. In this course we’ll talk about the Safety Officer as it applies to CERTs. We’ll us a minimal jargon, lots of practical examples for the kinds of emergencies we’re likely to face, and finish with tabletop exercise to help us apply this knowledge. Whether you are simply interested in learning more about how to keep yourself and CERT teammates safe or taking on the role of the Safety Officer, you’ll come away with new ideas and tips that might help prevent injury or even death.
RSVP to Carol Parker at mailto:email@example.com?subject=RWC%20RSVP%20to%20Safety%20Class
We will review equipment, usage and operations of when and how the CERT trailers are used, maintained and deployed. Has it been awhile since you have been inside the CERT trailers, come join us and familiarize yourself with our team equipment. Now is a great time to become familiar with the trailers in your own neighborhood.
Thursday February 12
6:30pm to 8:00pm
1455 Madison Ave., Redwood City
Veterans Memorial Bldg.
Some potentially useful information to share.
Spotted at today’s Health & Wellness Fair.
The regular Belmont CERT meeting for January was held Tuesday, 1/20/15 at Station 14. There was a presentation from Dino DeRanieri of Millbrae CERT. Dino will be talking about MURS Radios and how they are using them. MURS radios don’t require a license and have more power and range than the FRS Radios we are accustomed to using. This meeting topic came up as a result of the “reunification” event at the Belmont Harbor Mobile Home Park, where our CERT Volunteers were spread out without communication. Capt. Halleran also thought it would be great to share info with another active CERT team in our county.
MURS is a family of frequencies released by the FCC and Millbrae CERT has transitioned from FRS radios to MURS units due to the increased range and capability. Only two companies make these radios, Dakota Alert ($71) and Motorola ($190). Here is the MURS information that was distributed at the meeting. Capt Halleran will look into purchasing some MURS radios for team use.
Save The Date for Silver Dragon IX- Thursday April 23rd