West U Offering Community Emergency Response Team Training this Fall

June 28, 2012

The City of West U is offering its first Harris County Community Emergency Response Team training this fall for interested residents.

The 8-week training course will be held at the Community Center, 6104 Auden, from Sept. 19 – Nov. 7. Classes will be held on Wednesday evenings from 6:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.

CERT training educates residents about the hazards they face in their community and trains them in lifesaving skills. Residents with CERT training can assist in their neighborhoods during a disaster to help when profession first responders are overwhelmed or not immediately available, according to the Harris County Citizen Corps website.

The training sessions will cover disaster preparedness, fire suppression, basic disaster medical operations, light search and rescue, disaster psychology, team organization, and a new module on terrorism to educate CERT members about Biological Nuclear Incendiary Chemical Explosive (BNICE) agents.

The training concludes with a disaster simulation in which participants practice skills that they learned throughout the course.

“I’m hopeful that West U residents will take part in this and we’ll be able to actually establish a team in the West U area to help our fire department,” West U resident and Harris County CERT representative Steven Segal said.

Segal spoke about the CERT program during Monday’s city council meeting.

CERT training allows first responders to rely on volunteers who they know have had training, he said.

“I find it has prepared me for family household emergencies, for neighborhood emergencies, disaster preparation and just general education,” Segal said.

Mayor Pro Tem Susan Sample seconded his comments saying that she had taken the course in 2006 and found it very useful.

West U Fire Captain Derek Elkins said the CERT certification doesn’t expire but volunteers are encouraged to do refresher training.

To register, contact Derek Elkins at DElkins@westutx.gov or call 713-662-5835 and ask for the officer in charge to register.

InstantNewsWestu Staff

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