Friday, February 11, 2011


Next weekend Julie and I will take part in 19 hours of CERT Training. CERT is the acronym for Community Emergency Response Team.

I don't like the thought of losing an entire weekend (Friday evening, Saturday and Sunday) but I do look forward to the training.

There are seven sessions on the agenda.
  • Disaster Preparedness
  • Disaster Fire Suppression
  • Disaster Medical Operations Part I
  • Disaster Medical Operations Part II
  • Light Search and Rescue Operations
  • Disaster Psychology and Team Organization
  • Course Review and Disaster Simulation
The county comprises 18,608 square miles. There are 45 deputies in the county. Our response time is 45 minutes, assuming the local deputies aren't covering some other part of the county. There are sections of the county with only one deputy. If a local deputy has to cover that area during the absence of the normal deputy then the response time to that part of the county may be two hours.

Due to the lack of many roads it is sometimes impossible for emergency services to get to individuals in need. Recently during a snow storm Interstate 17 was closed south of Flagstaff. The sheriff's department couldn't get to stranded vehicles. A CERT team in that area provided overnight accommodations and food for 60 people in a local church.

Another problem is that lack of systematic addressing of residences and mapping of roads. (Our address is Leupp Road but we don't live on Leupp Road. Our road has neither name nor number.) At two recent meetings local residents have been highlighting a map to identify roads that still exist and are used. As large tracts of land have been subdivided the new owners have put up fences and closed roads on their property. As a result emergency vehicles have difficulty finding residences. Recently Julie saw an ambulance stop about a half mile from our house. The driver was lost and didn't know which fork of the road to choose.

I'm not in favor of some of the ideas that have been suggested at recent meetings but I can't find fault with the CERT program. Next weekend should be enjoyable and helpful. I like where we live and know we have to rely on ourselves.


Blogger Buffalo said...

A huge area and not many assets. CERT training, an emergency response team is an invaluable asset anywhere and particularly valuable there.

2/11/2011 11:16:00 AM  

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